Monday, April 7, 2014

Raise the Roof Fun Ride

Tell everyone you don't know (plus the people you know...)

Raise the Roof Golf Tournament

Friday, October 4, 2013

Newnan and Coweta County's Gathering Place for Veterans

The Coweta Veterans Club is located just outside of Newnan, in Coweta County, Georgia. We were founded on April 5, 1948 as a home for Coweta County's American Legion and VFW Posts.

WHO WE ARE

We are: Veterans. Citizens. Families.

The Coweta Veterans Club primarily serves Coweta County. Our membership rolls include comrades who served our country during war-time from World War II to the current conflicts in Afghanistan and around the world.

On April 5, 1948, the Coweta Veterans Club was incorporated with the objective of "promoting social fellowship and companionship among its members." Membership is restricted to comrades in good standing of VFW Post 2667 and American Legion Post 57. The property and buildings that currently house those two veterans organizations was donated to the Coweta Veterans Club to foster that objective.

The Club is also home to:
  • American Legion Ladies Auxiliary, Unit 57
  • American Legion Riders, Unit 57
  • Sons of the American Legion, Unit 57

OUR MISSION

We are dedicated to supporting those who sacrifice so much for this country - veterans, service members in the US Armed Forces and their families. To fulfill our mission:
  1. Through the VFW and American Legion we provide advocacy to the individual veteran. This is for both the veteran and his/her family. Our Post Service Officer is an well-versed at dealing with the Department of Veterans Affairs.
  2. We assist currently deployed military and their families. This includes supporting family readiness group activities, welcome home ceremonies, phone cards to deployed service members and financial assistance to meet the emergency needs that arise from deployments.
  3. We develop the next generation of patriots by sponsoring educational and patriotic activities in the community. We support our local JROTC and scouting programs.
  4. Our goal is to stay focused locally. National programs do a lot of good, but our calling is to help within our community; in Coweta County.
WHAT WE DO... IN THE COMMUNITY

We are our membership. The membership of American Legion Post 57 and VFW Post 2667 chooses to actively participate in our community.
  1. We sponsor, with the support of the VFW and American Legion Posts, the Coweta Veterans Club Open golf tournament with proceeds going to support the Coweta Cancer Support Group. 
  2. We provide flag-folding and speakers for funerals and/or memorial services for deceased veterans.
  3. We collect unserviceable flags in the area and see that they are properly and respectfully retired.
  4. We provide veterans to speak on flag etiquette and Americanism topics at schools, churches and youth programs, especially around Memorial Day and Veterans Day.
  5. We conduct regular visits to VA Hospitals and veteran's homes providing various sundry items and comradeship to fellow veterans throughout the year.
  6. Our members are active throughout the community donating their leadership and time to many civic endeavors. Our membership donates hours to such organizations as: The Red Cross, Salvation Army, Habitat for Humanity, Cancer Society and many others.
  7. We support the annual Memorial Day and Veterans Day programs by serving a community luncheon on each of these holidays.
  8. We conduct or participate in many other patriotic parades and events throughout the year such as Flag Day, Independence Day, POW/MIA Recognition Day, Veterans Day and more.
WHY YOU SHOULD JOIN

You
A portion of your annual or life membership goes to support the strong voice of the VFW for the benefit of all veterans.

As a member of the VFW, you and your family are eligible to participate in some great programs such as: a free subscription to VFW Magazine, cell phone and computer discounts, Dignity Memorial, financial services, healthcare services/discounts, hotel and car rental discounts, identity theft program, real estate and mortgage programs, travel discounts, VFW insurance, and many more.

You can socialize with and discuss with fellow combat service veterans your service experiences.

As an active member of VFW Post 2667 you can make a difference in your community while socializing and helping veterans like yourself.

Contact using the information in the upper right-hand corner of this page and become a part of the VFW.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

2012 Memorial Day Program Announced

Newnan's VFW Post 2667 Post Commander, Jeff Carroll announced the theme for the annual Memorial Day Ceremonies, to be held at Veterans' Memorial Plaza on May 28, at 11:00 AM. For the past twelve years, the ceremonies have remembered one selected service member who died in the service of our country, representing and honoring all who made the supreme sacrifice. This year, Carroll explained, the ceremony will be entitled, "Five Gold Stars," honoring five additional names recently placed on the plaza honor rolls. The Gold Star, often seen on window banners, is a symbol of the loss of a family member, killed in action.

 

During the preparations for last year's visit of the Vietnam Healing Wall, it was discovered that there were two Vietnam KIA's from Coweta County who were overlooked on the original honor roll. They are John Dozier and Daniel Post, both of whom have surviving family members in the area.

 

In the past two years, three Cowetans have died, serving in combat. They are Chad D. Coleman, of Moreland, who died in 2010 while assigned to Afghanistan. Adrian G. Mills, a graduate of Northgate High School, died in 2011, in Kirkuk, Iraq. Nicholas S. Whitlock, graduate of Newnan High School and Mercer University, died in Djibouti, Africa, while piloting a special operations aircraft.

 

Surviving family members of all five have been invited to attend and be a part of the program. Carroll issued a special invitation to any Gold Star families to attend. He also announced that commemorative bricks had been purchased by the VFW for the five men being honored. As a gesture of remembrance, two bricks are also being purchased. First, for Korean War casualty, Richard E. Clapp, a native of Seattle, whose remains were recently identified after 62 years. His sister resides in Senoia. Michael C. Braden, whose family recently moved to Newnan, and who recently died in Afghanistan. The commemorative bricks will be installed prior to Veterans' Day in November.

 

Commander Carroll noted that the Memorial Day weekend will include the annual "Buddy Poppy" drive, with VFW members stationed in local venues, seeking donations which are exclusively used to help veterans and veterans' families and scholastic patriotism programs.

 

On Saturday, the Coweta Veterans' Club will conduct the annual flag placement on veterans' graves in local cemeteries. This year, the Sons of the American Legion (SAL) will host the placements. The SAL was organized to provide a way for non-veteran sons and grandsons of veterans to participate in programs and services in support of the American Legion. The SAL extends an invitation to the community to participate in helping to remember the service of deceased veterans. Caring citizens are asked to assemble at the Veterans Club on Hwy 29N (Across from A&W Nursery), at 8:30 AM or meet at the cemetery entrances. The Veterans' Club will make available a limited number of flags for local church and private cemeteries.

 

In keeping with a wonderful tradition, the Coweta Veterans' Club will host a dinner for the public, immediately following the ceremonies on Monday. Food will be served from 12:30 till 2:30. A special invitation is extended to all public service and emergency personnel. For additional information, please contact the Club at 770-251-6949

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Veterans Employment Seminar March 14

The first Veterans Employment Seminar of the year will be March 14 from 1-3 p.m.

This seminar is among several to be held for veterans in 2012. The session will be facilitated by Peter Ludlow, manager of the Newnan office of the Georgia Department of Labor.

Ludlow, along with Alan Hurd of the DOL office will be explaining the new Gold Card Veterans Preference Programs for Post-9/11 veterans that are currently available. A main concern is that post 9/11 veterans need to be aware of specific programs available to veterans through the Department of Labor.

The DOL and sponsoring veterans organizations are interested to hear the issues directly from the veterans who are facing obstacles in finding employment. Hank Berkowitz, local Veterans Service Officer for the sponsoring veterans organizations, is coordinating the seminar events.

"We are interested to hear from veterans whether the current DOL programs meet their needs," said Berkowitz.

"We recognize that Post 9/11 veterans will face the same difficulties all veterans have faced in transferring military skill sets to civilian employment and they need the guidance of trained DOL experts," Ludlow emphasized.

In addition, employers from the community will also be present to discuss their hiring procedures and what they are looking for in various skill categories. They will respond to difficulties that may be inhibiting successful employment.

"Young discharged veterans returning from the 'Sand Boxes' of Iraq and Afghanistan need to have proven programs in place and we hope this Seminar will start the process," said Berkowitz.

The seminar is hosted by Newnan's American Legion Post 57, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2667, Marine Corps League Detachment 1325 along with DAV Chapter 31 in LaGrange.

The March 14 seminar is scheduled from 1-3 p.m. at the Coweta Veterans Club, 130 Veterans Club Drive off U.S. Highway 29 north of the bypass and just across from A&W Nursery. (Click here for Directions to the Club)

The presentation includes opportunities for veterans to discuss job search concerns with actual local employers, current opportunities and efforts for assistance toward finding jobs in present economic conditions and Veterans Preference and Priority of Service.

Berkowitz may be reached at Hberkowitz.vso@gmail.com. For more information, calls may be made to 770-254-7220.

Monday, December 26, 2011

The Best Christmas Present Ever

Gene Cook, a World War II veteran and member of VFW Post 2667 and American Legion Post 56, wrote a letter recalling Christmas Eve, 1944 near Bastogne, Belgium.
“It was Christmas Eve and we sat huddled in a small woods just outside of Bastogne. After a week of hard fighting we were out of food, water and ammunition; everything except hope and determination. We had endured snow to our knees, freezing -40-degree cold, a lack of any warm clothing and countless casualties. We were surrounded by the enemy for eight days who outnumbered us eight-fold.
A peek of sunshine appeared and the cloudy sky began to clear when suddenly we heard, not reindeer, but the throbbing sound of airplanes. Expecting the worst, we began to see hundreds of parachutes. Frowns and worry on our faces rapidly changed to smiles and laughter as our ‘presents’ dropped to earth.
Out of the woods, onto the drop zone we ran, amidst the red, white, blue and green chutes, loading the ‘presents’ onto vehicles to distribute them where the need was greatest. The red ammunition bundles were given top priority. Everything we needed, except clothing and water, including several doctors, who like angels arrived in a glider.
Then one squad member came by holding a tin of fruit cake. ‘Merry Christmas from Troop Carrier Command’ the card read. (It was) the spirit of our brothers who understood our plight.
Christ, as His birthday present to us, had indeed visited Bastogne, far overshadowing the arrival of Patton who He sent two days later. We had persevered with the victory of freedom yet to come.
All glory to God.”

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Military Orders Cross Removed from Chapel

A cross has been removed from a U.S. Army chapel which soldiers attend on a NATO military base in nothern Afghanistan. The military said having the cross on the chapel violated regulations and that they had received complaints.


h/t: Townhall

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

US Army Tests Hypersonic Weapon Prototype

The U.S. Army's hypersonic weapon prototype streaked across the Pacific Ocean at several times the speed of sound Thursday, Nov. 17, in a flawless maiden test flight. The success could pave the way for a new military capability to strike targets anywhere on Earth in as little as an hour.

Such a hypersonic weapon concept flies at a relatively flat trajectory within the atmosphere, rather than soaring up toward space like a ballistic missile and eventually coming back down. Hypersonic speed is defined as being at least five times the speed of sound (3,805 mph, or 6,124 kph, at sea level).

Read full story at FoxNews.com - U.S. Army Tests Secret Hypersonic Weapon

Monday, December 12, 2011

Remembering a Soldier's Soldier

Here's the start of the article by Lee Habeeb at the National Review:

Every American should know his name and his story. And, thanks to a great book by Stephen Ambrose — Band of Brothers — and an equally great HBO television series, many do. What millions of Americans don’t know is that Richard “Dick” Winters died on January 2 at the age of 92.

"Son, that is what you call a soldier’s soldier," my dad, an Air Force man, told me after the epic series ended. And you know how charitable Air Force men are about Army men.

Read the full story at National Review.com - Remembering a Soldier’s Soldier 

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Pearl Harbor Commemoration Includes Eyewitness Accounts

It is always fascinating to listen to eyewitnesses recount significant moments in history -- more so when those events happened 70 years ago.

About 40 people did just that Wednesday as two survivors of "the day that will live in infamy" spoke during a Coweta County memorial service on the anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack. The service was held at the McKoon Funeral Home chapel in Newnan, moved from Veterans' Memorial Plaza due to the rainy weather Wednesday.

Read the full story at Times-Herald.com: Pearl Harbor Ceremony Included Eyewitness Accounts

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Bravo Company Soldiers Give Back to the Community

Soldiers of Newnan-based Bravo Company of the 2nd Battalion, 121st Regiment of the Georgia National Guard's 48th Infantry, celebrated the Christmas season by performing community service projects and hosting a Christmas dinner for soldiers' families.

The family gathering Saturday at the Jackson-Pless National Guard Armory included a visit from Santa Claus to greet youngsters attending.

Company Commander Captain Nicholas Jones said the annual event was focused on the troops' families and the community where Bravo Company is based.

Read Full Story at Times-Herald.com: Soldiers Give Back to the Community

Friday, December 9, 2011

Vietnam Veterans, POW Speaks in Newnan

Kiwanian Don Chapman tells a lot of jokes and is the butt of a lot of jokes, but it was all serious in May of 1967, when he was flying beside Bill Bailey in Vietnam and Bailey's plane was hit.

Bailey was immediately captured and taken to Hanoi where he was tortured for three days and spent the next six years as a prisoner of war.

Bailey was the speaker at a recent Newnan Kiwanis Club luncheon at the Newnan Country Club.

Full story at Times-Herald.com: POW Speaks to Newnan Kiwanis

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Newnan Soldier Honored in Afghanistan

BY U.S. AIR FORCE CAPT. DAVID TOMIYAMA
PROVINCIAL RECONSTRUCTION TEAM, KHOST PUBLIC AFFAIRS

KHOST PROVINCE, Afghanistan -- A service member deployed to Afghanistan is often considered a hero in the United States.

While the average person might take their "hero" status and sit on their laurels, U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Rainey Ragland, a native of Newnan, is making a difference in supporting the provincial reconstruction team (PRT) mission of connecting the Afghan people with their government.

Ragland, a reservist from Navy Operational Support Command Atlanta at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, was awarded the PRT Khost Warrior of the Week for Oct. 31-Nov. 5 and the PRT commanding officer and sergeant major's coin during a ceremony at Forward Operating Base Salerno, Afghanistan, on Nov. 6.

The contracting officer representative is serving as a member of PRT Khost in the Khost Province.

"It's an honor to receive this award," he said. "I'm glad they recognized what I've done."

According to his citation, Ragland "met with the commander's cultural advisor to solidify his 2011-2012 contract and corrected Afghan cultural advisor pay issues. He finalized the people's message radio contract and took the initiative to meet with the contractor to make sure he understood the new terms and conditions of his contract. Ever vigilant, he recognized a need for printer toner cartridges to facilitate continued operations and negotiated favorable terms with a local vendor to obtain the best price."

"Getting these contracts through was very important to completing our mission," said U.S. Navy Senior Chief Petty Officer James Center, Navy senior enlisted leader. "Petty Officer Ragland was the catalyst in getting them signed."

PRT Khost is made up of more than 85 sailors, soldiers, airmen and civilians. The PRT conducts counterinsurgency operations, partnering with provincial and district leadership in order to develop critical infrastructure, education, and economic initiatives, and increase the legitimacy and accountability of the Afghan government to the people, enabling reintegration and ultimately allowing transition to occur with the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.

Coweta Participates in Wreaths Across America

Coweta veterans will participate in the national "Wreaths Across America" program with ceremonies Saturday.

Having its beginning in a small New England holiday wreath making company, "Wreaths Across America" has grown and now covers the entire nation, furnishing Christmas wreaths for placement on the graves of fallen warriors.

Arlington National Cemetery, for example, is provided with enough wreaths for every grave. Additionally, the program provides to other national cemeteries, communities and veterans' organizations, a symbolic number of wreaths to be appropriately used to commemorate their war dead.

Through the efforts of John O'Connor, a member of both the American Legion and VFW, the Coweta Veterans' Club receives seven wreaths each year, which are placed on the honor rolls at Veterans' Memorial Plaza at the Newnan city park at Temple Avenue and Jackson Street.

This year's ceremony will be held on Saturday, Dec. 10, at noon.

The wreath placement is a solemn ceremony, touched by the spirit of Christmas. Participants include members of veterans' and other patriotic organizations.

O'Connor, speaking for the sponsors, extended an invitation to the public to attend. "This ceremony, which remembers and honors, is also a time to reflect on all the Christmases missed by those names on the cold bronze plaques. Those departed souls, who made the supreme sacrifice, may just rest easier knowing that we wish the memory of them, a Merry Christmas."

The program will last only about thirty minutes. There will be a limited number of folding chairs available for attendees. Anyone needing more information is asked to call Dick Stender at 770-301-6076.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

70th Year Remembrance of Pearl Harbor

The Coweta Veterans Club, through VFW Post 2667 and American Legion Post 57 held a memorial ceremony on December 7 at McKoon Funeral Home at 11:00 AM. It was moved from Veterans’ Memorial Plaza due to inclimate weather. “It was described by FDR as a Day of Infamy,” said Ron Freese, Club Chairman. “It was also the day that brought America into the war and certainly put the nation in a fighting mood. We must not forget the two thousand plus who died in sinking ships, on airfields and in the skies. Their spirits still, and will forever, need to be remembered. We cannot let this day pass without pausing to remember what was a defeat, a defeat that drove us to eventual victory.”

The short program included a reading of President Roosevelt’s speech to Congress, declaring war on Japan. Freese made a special invitation to WWII veterans and senior citizens who have memories of Pearl Harbor Day they might wish to share. “Those who were young adults at that time can tell us more about the terror and anger experienced than any history book,” said Freese.

In keeping with a tradition born in WWII, the Veterans’ Club had coffee and donuts available at the Plaza, both before and after the ceremony.


Monday, November 14, 2011

Road Named for Coweta Veteran killed in Vietnam

Coweta native Warner Hughie was killed in action in 1970 in the Vietnam War. Hughie's ultimate sacrifice was honored recently by the Coweta County Board of Commissioners. "They designated a portion of Short Gordon Road as Warner Hughie Memorial Highway," said Patricia Palmer, county public affairs director.

"The stretch of road is along the family homeplace" where Hughie and his siblings grew up, Palmer said.

Ceremonies naming the road for the U.S. Army corporal were held Oct. 16. Coweta County Commissioner Tim Lassetter joined with members of Hughie's family to unveil the sign.

"Warner Hughie's sacrifice for our families, our community and our country, like too many others, should never be forgotten. Naming this road and placing these signs are small things we can do to help be certain that we always remember his sacrifice," said Lassetter.

Full article at Newnan Times-Herald

Friday, November 11, 2011

Veterans Day: Daviston is Coweta's Veteran of the Year

Terry Daviston, the owner of McKoon Funeral Home in Newnan, will be honored as Coweta County's Veteran of the Year in ceremonies Friday.

American Legion Post 57 Post Commander Dick Dennis announced plans for the community Veterans Day ceremonies -- including the honoring of Daviston. For the seventh year, the American Legion-sponsored program in Newnan will feature a selected local veteran who represents a successful life and a spirit of service to community, state and nation.

Daviston, an Alabama native, served his country during the Cold War as an Intelligence Specialist in the U.S. Army. He served in Japan, monitoring clandestine radio traffic from North Korea, China and the Soviet Union.

Upon completion of his enlistment, he began working in the funeral business, eventually completing mortuary school in Kentucky. A career of funeral home management brought him to Georgia, and his purchase of the McKoon Funeral Home from the founding family brought him to Newnan.

Dennis lauded Daviston's unselfish giving of his time and spirit to causes and individuals throughout Coweta County and Georgia. "Terry gives so much to so many and it is always with anonymity. He is what I call a quiet hero," Dennis said.

"He has always been our right arm during parades, ceremonies and our participation in veterans' funerals. He has stepped up when financially distressed veterans pass away, making sure that their final rest is with dignity and honor," Dennis said.

Kiwanis, the Coweta County Development Authority and the Veterans Plaza Committee have all benefited from Daviston's involvement. He is an active member of First Baptist Church of Newnan.

Daviston shares his life with Martha Ann, his wife of 46 years, son John and daughter Tracy Piepho and three grandchildren.

"In all he does, he has not forgotten to be thankful for the service of his fellow veterans," Dennis said, describing Daviston as "the perfect combination of success and compassion for others."

The ceremonies will begin at 11 a.m. at Veterans Memorial Plaza in the city park at Jackson Street and Temple Avenue. A musical program will feature the eighth-grade chorus from Smokey Road Middle School, directed by Mrs. Denise Meacham.

As seating is usually limited, the public is advised to bring folding chairs. In the case of inclement weather, the program will be held in the chapel of McKoon Funeral Home next to the park.

Parking is also available for the ceremony at McKoon's.

The traditional Veterans Day Luncheon at the Coweta Veterans' Club, will follow the ceremony. Dennis extended an invitation to all of Daviston's friends to attend the ceremonies and share in his pride and join the post for a meal and fellowship.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Newnan Marine Using His Love of Mechanics in Afghanistan

PATROL BASE WOLFPACK, Helmand province, Afghanistan -- "There's one thing my stepdad told me that I'll never forget: 'If you always have a trade, you will never go hungry.'"

Newnan native Sgt. Christopher Holmstrom found out at a young age he loved working with his hands and figuring out how things worked. As years passed his curiosity for discovering how remote controlled cars and Robocop worked evolved into taking apart engines on vehicles and putting them back together. Today, he continues his love for mechanics working on 12-ton vehicles in the U. S. Marine Corps and is currently deployed to Afghanistan.

Read the complete story at Newnan Times-Herald

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Caffeinated Beef Jerky for the Military?

An Army laboratory in Natick, Mass., is infusing beef jerky with a coffee cup's worth of caffeine to give soldiers a jolt with their protein. The snack, which looks like a Slim Jim, is part of new initiative to make portable meals more appealing and nutritious.

Although the Army already offers service men and women a version of instant Irish-cream coffee, it must be brewed with hot water, not always the most feasible option when you're in a war zone. The beef jerky is light, portable, and ready to eat. No cream or sugar required.

Experts at the Natick Soldier Research, Development & Engineering Center, a little-known facility outside Boston that creates the Army's field rations, known as MREs — perhaps "the most complained about food in the world," says Christian Davenport at The Washington Post. Durable MREs must have a three-year shelf life in up to 80 degree weather, and be able to survive a drop from an airplane. Obviously, MREs aren't just thrown together on a whim. "There is a lot of science that goes into this," says Natick spokesperson David Acetta. "It's not a bunch of cooks in the kitchen making recipes."

The military is looking to give its MRE program a "gourmet makeover," says Nadia Gilani at Britain's Daily Mail. There's a turbo-charged applesauce loaded with maltodextrin — a complex carbohydrate that gives soldiers an energy boost — appropriately dubbed "Zapplesauce." Other recent additions include chicken and pesto pasta, ratatouille, garlic mashed potatoes, and even a strawberry-banana dairy shake. According to Natick's Jeremy Whitslitt: "Nothing takes out a battalion of soldiers quicker than bad food."

Source: TheWeek

Times-Herald Special Vietnam Veterans Section Online

From Oct. 20-23, Coweta County hosted to a special visitor: The Vietnam Memorial Moving Wall.

The half-size replica of the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C., contains the names of all those lost during the Vietnam War, including 23 from Coweta County.

The wall was the main attraction of the 2011 Veterans Muster at the Coweta County Fairgrounds on Pine Road south of Newnan.

To help commemorate the visit of the Moving Wall, The Newnan Times-Herald, during a 14-week period starting July 10, published a series of articles compiled by staff writer Alex McRae about the Vietnam War and the Vietnam Memorial. The series and accompanying material about "The Wall That Heals" and the schedule of events for the Veterans Muster is a 24-page special section published on October 14th.

The series examined the causes, the victories, the defeats and the national unrest that followed the war from beginning to end. Each article featured comments and stories about the Vietnam experience from current Coweta veterans who served there.

This series was intended to help readers understand more about America's most unpopular war.

To view this Vietnam Veterans' special section, visit issuu.com/times-herald/docs/vetsection2011?mode=window.

The veterans of Coweta County are truly thankful to the Newnan Times-Herald for their continued outstanding support.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Four Boys From Happy Hollow

An early Veterans Day service will be Friday morning at 9 in Grantville to honor the "Four Boys From Happy Hollow," Grantville residents and neighbors who were killed in World War II.

A monument honoring the four will be dedicated during ceremonies at the park across from Grantville First United Methodist Church. The park is near Grantville's Happy Hollow neighborhood. Dick Stender, Past Commander of Newnan VFW Post 2667 and American Legion Post 57, will be the featured speaker.

The four men, Ralph Cleaveland Glanton, Jim Austin Lambert, James P. Rainwater and Eddie Rivers Thornton, were also honored at Memorial Day services in Newnan in 2005.

According to remarks made at the 2005 Memorial Day service, Thornton was the only one of the four born in Grantville. He was inducted into the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1942 and became a tail gunner with the 376th Heavy Bomber Group, stationed in Tunisia. On July 8, 1943, his unit was assigned to attack the Sicilian port of Messina.

The Germans had built tunnels, which made it hard to effectively bomb the port. In response, American forces had begun "skip bombing" -- flying extremely low so the bomb would bounce on the water and enter a tunnel before exploding.

The planes flew so low that soldiers sometimes had to pick bits of treetops out of the undercarriage of the planes. Because of illness of other soldiers, Thornton and his pilot and co-pilot were assigned to a different plane that day.

The plane was hit and damaged in the bomb run and fire broke out aboard the aircraft. Thornton put on his parachute and jumped out moments before the craft exploded. The co-pilot survived and floated in the Mediterranean for three days before he was rescued. Thornton was never found.

Ralph Glanton spent his early years in LaGrange. The family moved to Grantville after his father died in 1922. Ralph Glanton attended Georgia Military College and graduated from Clemson University.

When Pearl Harbor was attacked, Glanton was an Army reservist with the rank of Second Lieutenant. Six weeks later, he was called to active duty, serving with A Company, 6th Armored Infantry Battalion in North Africa.

After serving in North Africa Glanton was sent to Italy as part of the force attacking Monte Cassino. During one battle, Glanton led his platoon into a defensible position and was severely wounded. He could not be removed to a hospital and three days later, died from his wounds.

James P. Rainwater -- known as "Jay" or "J.P." -- grew up in East Newnan and graduated from Newnan High. He married Edna Brooks, and they rented a house in the Happy Hollow neighborhood. She went with her husband to his Army training at Ft. House, Texas. After her husband went overseas to fight, Edna returned to Grantville carrying a son who never knew his father.

Rainwater was assigned to the 410th Army Regiment, which landed in Marseilles after D-Day and then joined the attack against Germany. Rainwater was a staff sergeant and was involved in heavy fighting against a superior German force in the Vosges Mountains near the French-German border. A few days before Rainwater's 23rd birthday, his unit was pinned down by fire from a heavy machine gun at the town of St. Die. Rainwater lost his life during that battle and was buried in France.

Lambert's death was "the most tragic and ironic" of the four, according to Stender. He was almost 31 when Pearl Harbor was attacked. A native of Carroll County, Lambert was a textile mill mechanic and moved to Grantville after marrying Ruth Justiss. They lived in Happy Hollow until he was inducted into the military in 1942.

Lambert worked as a military mechanic and was and first stationed in England and later in France after the Normandy Invasion.

Three weeks after the war in Europe ended Lambert was in LeHavre, France, preparing to return home when he was struck and killed by a military vehicle as he walked down a narrow street.

Hat tip: Newnan Times-Herald

Next Event

Memorial Day program @ Veterans Memorial Plaza - 5/28 @ 11:00 AM
Community Luncheon - 5/28 @ 12:30