Dedication held in Clayton

Teresa Black Bradway

A Veteran’s Memorial Wall was dedicated in Clayton Saturday, “In Honor of United States Veterans … Past … Present … Future.”
          The Wall bears names of military veterans from this area. Some are living, some dead.  Some served in World War II, Vietnam, the Middle East, or in other combat. 
          So far, there are six stones with names and their branch of service.
         Saturday morning, veterans, families, volunteers who worked to create the Memorial and supporters gathered to dedicate the Wall.
          Ron Miller welcomed the audience and gave introductions. 
         The Invocation was by Gary Fuller.
        Robert Krouse and Brandon Croft led the Pledge of Allegiance.
         Tyler Macon played the National Anthem on his saxophone. 
        Lizzie Butler sang, “God Bless the USA.”
         Col. Robert K. Byrd, retired, was the guest speaker.  A McAlester native, he enlisted in 1982 and served in Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait, Honduras, Panama and elsewhere.  He has many decorations including the Bronze Star for his service.
         Ron Miller said others will be added to the Memorial as names are gathered and funds donated to pay for more stones.
          There are Clayton area men and women who served in the military whose names are not on the stones.  Hopefully all will be honored and more names displayed.
          Trish Butler of Lil’ Mama’s Kitchen started her own veterans’ memorial with photos on the wall of her restaurant.  She wanted a public memorial.  She and friends raised funds for years for the Memorial dedicated Saturday.