Thirteen new brick pavers were recently placed at the Veterans Memorial at Honor Park in Guthrie, adding to the hundreds of veterans who had previously been honored in this same fashion. While numerous members of the American Legion Post 58 attended the official placement of the pavers, key honorees included Bill Stone, Phillip Handke, his family, and the son of Tom Edwands.
Bill Stone, born in Perry, OK, did his Army basic training at beautiful Ft. Leonard Wood in Missouri before heading off to Korea. He was in the Army from 1952 to 1954. In that short period of time he rose to the rank of Sergeant. His fondest memory of his time in Korea was when the company officer “gave” him his jeep and driver for a number of days to “explore” Korea just before returning to the states.
Phillip Handke, a United States Marine, was in Vietnam from 1967 to 1970 and was involved in the TET Offensive. He was a radio operator for his Marine unit. He remembers it be “darn hot”, but the best memory was being able to “hook up” with his brother who was in the Army and also in Vietnam at the same time. “What a great reunion and a great blessing that we both came home alive!”
Tom Edwands, Air Force and Navy veteran, was represented by his son John. Tom was a mechanic in the Air Force and stationed in Germany. Upon returning to the states he joined the Naval Reserves and the Seabees. In that capacity he was activated following 9/11 and sent to Pearl Harbor. He spent two years in that activation in Hawaii and Guam with his reserve group.
The brick pavers are placed at this memorial to honor any veteran who has served his or her country while on active duty. The pavers are a great tribute to the women and men who have protected our values, our beliefs and our future by putting on the military uniform. To all of them we say “Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!!
The pavers may be purchased for $40 through the American Legion Post 58 in Guthrie. Additional information is available by calling the Legion at 282-2589. The Application form is available on line from Legion member Steve Gentling at email@example.com.