A project several years in the making to remember deceased service veterans is taking shape, thanks to Carpenter-Diesch-White American Legion Post #436 in Earlville.
The Post is placing a medallion at the headstone of each veteran’s grave.
Doug Dabroski discovered an old list of veteran’s graves. With the help of the Delaware County Veterans’ Administration, 30 medallions were provided for placement.
The medallions, supplied by the VA, are era-specific to the time served by each veteran. Currently, seven different markers are available; GAR (Civil War), World War (WWI), WWII, Korea, Vietnam Gulf War and for any service person not falling into any of these, Veteran. At this time, all except Gulf War are represented in both St. Joseph and Fairview cemeteries.
The cemetery board of each cemetery has requested these markers be placed in the foundation of the headstone. Several members of the Earlville American Legion Post spent a recent Saturday morning placing missing markers as needed. Going through the cemetery, they checked medallions already in place for damage, ensuring they are in the correct place and securing them.
Attached to a bronze rod, the medallions are secured into the foundation by drilling a slightly undersized hole in the concrete foundation. The bronze rod is driven into the hole and the medallion is threaded onto the rod after a high strength thread locker is applied.
If a loved one’s grave is not marked, contact Loras Mensen, Legion Commander at 875-7886. Legion members may still have the grave on the list to receive a marker, are unaware of their service or are looking for verification of service.
The Legion will need some proof of service to obtain a medallion through the VA. This can be a DD214 record of service, that may be recorded at the county recorder’s office. Other forms of proof include a copy of orders, letters with their company’s name in the address. Anything someone has that may indicate a time of service might work. If there is no record of their service, but they are known to have served, contact Mensen to see what can be done.