Lost names added to Legion memorial

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 26, 2003

In the enthusiasm and naivete of the times, it was billed as &uot;the war to end all wars.&uot;

It did nothing of the sort, of course. Even the dedication of the Legion Memorial that stands at the entrance of New Live Oak Cemetery reads: &uot;In memory of our departed comrades who made the supreme sacrifice in the world war, April 7th, 1917, to Nov. 11, 1918.&uot;

The memorial was dedicated on Nov. 11, 1929, by the members of American Legion Post No. 20. They could not know at the time that another world war lay just over the horizon or that America would call upon her sons and daughters to place themselves in harm’s way any number of times in the years since.

But there was another error made when the memorial was dedicated, this one an error of omission. The memorial purports to list the names of all the residents of Dallas County who died during World War I.

After a search of the official list of casualties maintained at the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Archives and History, it was determined that 25 names had been left off the monument.

The members of Post 20 solicited donations to pay for the cost of adding the missing names. Tuesday, a handful of people gathered at the site of the memorial to pay a debt that has long been overdue.

Twenty-five bricks, each with the name of an American serviceman who gave his life in service to his country, were added to the monument. There was no fanfare &045;&045; the official ceremony will come later. But there was a quiet sense of accomplishment.

The list of contributors includes Henry Brick Company, the Emblem Club, Alston and Ann Fitts, BPOE Selma Lodge No. 167, One Selma, the Lions Club, and past exalted rulers of BPOE Selma Lodge No. 167.

The names of the 25 Dallas County servicemen honored Tuesday who gave their lives for their country in World War I are:

John Blackmon, Pfc., U.S. Army

S.J. Bonner, Pvt., U.S. Army

George Cade, Cpl., U.S. Army

Paul Campbell, Pvt., U.S. Army

Jordan Douglass, Pvt., U.S. Army

John Edwards, Pvt., U.S. Army

Rich Evins, Pvt., U.S. Army

Judge Fegin, Pvt., U.S. Army

Richard W. Gilchrist, Pvt., U.S. Army

Willie Hall, Pvt., U.S. Army

Earnest Harrison, MA1, U.S. Navy

Ben Hatcher, Pvt., U.S. Army

Thurston Heath, Pvt., U.S. Army

John W. Higginbotham, Capt., U.S. Marine Corps

Wallace Johnson, Pvt., U.S. Army

William M. Lee, Pvt., U.S. Army

William C. Marion, Sgt., U.S. Army

Josh McGrue, Pvt. U.S. Army

Sol Miller, Pvt., U.S. Army

Walter Murray, Pvt., U.S. Army

Frank Pernell, Pvt., U.S. Army

Robert Smith, Pvt., U.S. Army

Henry Somerville, Pvt., U.S. Army

Willie C. Tripp, Pvt., U.S. Army

Theo Williams, Pvt., U.S. Army