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Veterans recognized during evening of entertainment

By Carol Sones Shelter - | Sep 15, 2021

CAROL SHETLER/Luminary (Front left-right): Floyd Gortner, Richard Kelley, DaunWilliams, Kenneth Johnson. (Back row): Marlin Tanner, Stuart Easton, Lynn Knower and William Messersmith.

MONTGOMERY – On Saturday evening, Sept. 4, more than 200 were in attendance along the Susquehanna at Montgomery Park where the evening air was filled with music by the McNett Country Band. Picking and singing on the stage were Tim McNett, Opal and Carl Schlappi of Huntersville, and a drummer from Canton.

“This evening is a gift to the community from Eagle Grange #1 during its 150th anniversary,” said Doug Bonsell, program chair from the State Grange.

During intermission, three members of the ‘Korean War Veterans of Lycoming County’ held a flag-folding demonstration in which the meaning of each fold represents a symbol. The group, formed in 1996, began in July 1999 to fold flags at military funerals, and to date have participated in 1,755.

The demonstration was followed with recognition of 33 veterans who were awarded folders holding certificates of appreciation for their service to our country. The presentations were made by Jenn Nauss, Eagle Grange secretary.

Referring to a pre-register list and in conversation during photo time, it was learned Howard Wilt of Loyalsock held the earliest date of service being with the Marine Corps from 1948-1952. Wilt said, “Marines do with dignity what otherwise would be called a brawl.”

CAROL SHETLER/The Luminary (Kneeling left-right): Dale Wertman, Richard VanBuskirk. (Standing): Paul LaForme, William Jones and Ken Edwards.

Richard Moorhead of Montgomery, who’d served in the Army from 1986-1992, wore a plaid kilt in honor of his Scottish heritage.

Clad from ‘head to toe,’ that is to say, ‘hat to boots,’ William Messersmith wore his Army fatigues. Serving from 1960-1966, the former soldier had been born in Mooresburg and the one-room brick school he’d attended currently houses a museum.

Veterans and year’s served are as follows:

AIR FORCE – Carl A. Buck, Jr., 1966-1970; George W. Heiges, Jr., 1980-2001, Paul LaForme, 1951-1953; Dale J. Wertman, Sr., 1966-1988.

ARMY – Floyd G. Gortner, 1953-1955; Dennis Gruver, 1965-1968; Donald Head, 1952-1954; Joshua Hoover, 1998-2006; William S. Jones, 1968-1983; David W. Lomison, 1968-1970; William Messersmith, 1960-1966; Richard Moorhead, 1986-1992; Donald D. Pentz, 1962-1965; James Stahl, 1964-1965; Kenneth Tupper, 1967-1969; Richard VanBuskirk, 1953-1955. Tim Edkins, 1986-2002, Army Reserves; William S. Jones, 1989-1995, Pennsylvania National Guards.

MARINES – Charles L. Sanders, 1972-1974; Howard Wilt, 1948-1952.

NAVY – Christopher E. Buck, 1973-1977; Kenneth W. Johnson, 1951-1975; Dave Ravert, 1968-1972; Daun Williamson, 2010-2015; R. Stuart Easton, Navy Reserves 1955-1978; Jackie L. Eisenhauer, Navy/Marines, 1966-1970.

ADDITIONAL VETERANS were Kenneth Edwards, Richard L. Kelley, Lynn Knower, Francis Sabo, Marlin Tanner and Nevin Zeisloft.