Thomasville Times Enterprise

April 15, 2014

Crosses of Military Service awarded


THOMASVILLE — The John B. Gordon Chapter 383 United Daughters of the Confederacy held its 140th Confederate Memorial Day Service on April 5 in honor of members’ Confederate ancestors and veterans of all wars. The service was held in the chapel of First United Methodist Church.

Guests were greeted and programs given by Franci Mari Carter.

Robert H. Parrish, Jr. performed the prelude of period and patriotic music before the service and continued performing as Chapter members and Military Medal Recipients entered the sanctuary escorted by Dianne Ponder.

John B. Gordon Chapter 383 President, Sheila Tucker welcomed the assembly and led the pledges to the United States flag, state of Georgia flag and salute to the Confederate flag.

The colors were presented by James Gaskins, Sons of Confederate Veterans; Deputy Josh Smith, Thomas County Sheriff’s Departmen, and Bruce Tucker, Sons of Confederate Veterans.

Ginger Norman gave the invocation followed by singing “Dixie’s Land” led by Emily Smith.

Sheila Tucker and Vera Hagan, Chapter Recorder of Military Service Awards presented Crosses of Military Service Medals to Leon Lanier Blair, World War II, Radioman 3rd Class, USS Seattle U.S. Navy, the Rev. Merrill Coram on behalf of his brother Edwin M. Coram, World War II, Private First Class, Co. B, 310 Infantry US Navy, David Ellis, accepting posthumously for his grandfather Henry W. Fielding, World War II Technician 5th Grade, Headquarters Co. 14th Armored Infantry Battalion US Army, David Willis Fletcher, Vietnam Conflict, Specialist 4th Class, Battery C, 1st Battalion, 6th Artillery, 1st Cavalry Div. US Army, Phillip James Godwin, Vietnam Conflict, Specialist 5th Grade, 609th Transportation Co., 9311st Engineer Group U.S. Army, Dallas E. Hagan, World War II, Corporal, 1262nd Army Air Force Base Unit, US Air Force and  John W. Searles, World War II, Private, CO F, 168th Infantry, US Army.

Special tributes were given by chapter members. Angie Ellis presented the Tribute to Confederate Veterans, Camille Davis presented the Tribute to Veterans of All Wars, Lois Hand and daughter Meme Hand, CofC, presented the Tribute to States Supporting the Confederacy in order of secession. Deborah Phillips presented the Tribute to UDC Members and Penny Gaskins presented the Tribute to the CofC.

Emily Smith led the assembly in singing General Lee’s favorite hymn, “How Firm A Foundation”, accompanied by Robert H. Parrish Jr.

Jinanne Parrish introduced speaker, the Rev. Donald J. West.

His topic was “The Confederate Plumb Line Test”.

Parrish stated that “Don was reared in Augusta, Georgia where Southern hospitality, duty, honor and  integrity were just as much a part of a child's education, as reading, writing and arithmetic. Don learned his lessons well.  Rev. West is one of the finest true Southern gentlemen that I know.”

Joe Ashcraft, piper and member of Tallahassee Pipe Band, performed before the service and “The Bonnie Blue Flag” during the service. The benediction was given by Mary Margaret Quiggle with “Taps” being performed by John Gray.

Following the service a reception was held honoring the Medal Recipients and guests.

Dorothy Maxwell, Chairman Reception Committee, Sue Cleveland, Suzanne Poppell, Voncile Davis, Christalyn Wike, CofC, and chapter members prepared and served refreshments.