Veterans memorial dedicated in Churdan

The names of 202 military veterans are etched on two large, black granite stones at the Highland Township Cemetery. Those stones, along with a third bearing the emblems of the five branches of the U.S. military, comprise a Veterans Memorial that was dedicated on Memorial Day.  Lighted American flags flank the memorial.

The names are those of Churdan veterans from the Civil War to the present, grouped by their time of service. Listed are 24 Civil War veterans, 45 World War One veterans, 88 World War veterans, 15 Korean War veterans, 19 Vietnam veterans, and 11 veterans who served during peace time and active servicemen.

John Mosher, a Churdan native who now lives in Florida, spearheaded the project. He spoke at the dedication. He mentioned Legion member Raymond Roper, who years ago proposed flying American flags at the Highland Township at St Patrick Catholic cemeteries on Memorial Day. Now close to 300 flags decorate the cemeteries.

“This day, our Veterans Memorial dedication shows that the American legion Post198 Edward English is still determined to dream big and remember forever those like Mr Raymond Roper who proudly served our country,” Mosher said.

He also named Duane Towers and his wife Carolyn, who were past post commander and past Legion auxiliary president respectively. “Commander Towers was a strong supporter of this project and his knowledge of the names of servicemen and women was invaluable,” he said.

A portion of the funding for the memorial came through grants. Teri Towers Harr shared the letter of support she provided for the grants. In it, show told of the importance patriotism and Memorial Day services at the local cemeteries had for her family.

Mosher thanked Grow Greene County, United Bank of Iowa, Webster Calhoun Telephone Company, Hamilton Redi-Mix and Western Iowa Energy for project funding. He also thanked the Greene County secondary roads department for work on the concrete foundation for the memorial.

Future plans include purchasing 60 bronze flag holders so that each veteran’s headstone can be decorated with a flag, concrete to make the memorial handicap accessible, and a bench nearby.

This veterans memorial was place on Highway 4 in Churdan several years ago. | GCNO file photo
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