The Carroll County Sheriff’s Department furnished VFW Post 1115 flags representing various branches of the United States Military and a special meal featuring barbecue Friday at the post. According to Sheriff J.B. Gardner, the Post has consistently supported the department and it was time for them to be a recipient.
“These guys are always doing something for us or the community,” said Gardner “This whole idea came out of a bunch of us getting together and thinking what’s something can we do for them. We saw a need. We started and it seemed like with every suggestion someone would say I want to do that. Here it is.”
Gardner said the ceremony and meal, which featured 250 pounds of pork barbecue, were paid for by the department’s officers.
VFW Post Young Gun member Mike Lara said he was impressed with the dedication to getting the ceremony correctly displayed by the officers. Lara said participants practiced for more than two hours a day, often coming in on their days off or when they were off duty.
“The cool thing to me is it wasn’t just one person who came up with this. Each officer had their own input,” said Lara. “They’d watch and then give some more input. They took the time giving it extra attention (to detail) and dressed out for this.”
Gardner opened the flag presentation ceremony by telling participants some of his deputies are veterans. He said it was his “absolute honor to represent the men and women of the Sheriff’s Office in the ceremony.”
“It is our hopes that these flags will be proudly displayed by the members of VFW Post 1115, to honor those veterans that have sacrificed so much for our country,” said Gardner. “At this time, the Carroll County Sheriff’s Office would like to present a flag honoring each branch of service in appreciation for all that you have done for our office, this community and this country.
A Prisoners Of War (POW) and Missing In Action flag was also presented. Veterans were asked to stand as they were able while the anthem of their branch of services was presented. The flags presented were for the United States Navy, United States Army, United States Coast Guard, United States Air Force and The United States Marines.
Corporal Mike Combs presented the United States of America flag to Post Commander Marty Rivera, who served in the Navy from 1983 to 1991. Corporal Seth Greer presented Frank Sloope with the flag of the United States Navy. Sloope served from 1954 to 1963.
Deputy Jason Newman, who served in the U.S. Army from 2003 to 2010, presented the Army flag to Doug Barnes, who served in the Army from 1998 to 2012. The United States Coast Guard flag was presented by Deputy Jake Worrell to Gary Adams, who served in the Navy from 2007 to present.
Deputy Lakecia Fender, an Air Force Veteran, served Air Force presented the Air Force Flag to Carl Feazell, who served in the Air Force from 1966 to 1969. The United States Marine Corps Flag was presented by Deputy Josh Carlin, who served in the Corps from 2008 to 2012 to Mike Lara, who served in the Corps from 2000 to 2008.
“The POW/MIA flag adopted by the U.S. Congress on August 10, 1990 symbolized our country’s commitment to fully resolve the possible fates of Americans still held prisoner, missing and unaccounted for in Southeast Asia,” said Gardner. This flag was presented by Deputy Miranda Davis to Corporal Coy Shaffner, who served in the Army from 1943 to 1946. Shaffner served with the 26th Infantry Division during World War II and was a prisoner of war in Germany for 203 days before his release.
David Broyles may be reached at 276-779-4013 or on Twitter@CarrollNewsDave.