In 1996, the Oak Lawn Veterans Memorial was dedicated in a ceremony. Today, as we enjoy the Memorial Holiday with our friends and families, it is appropriate to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country and our community. The program that day read
TODAY WE HONOR THESE FALLEN HEROES AND KNOW THEY WILL BE REMEMBERED AND HONORED IN PERPETUITY. THEY GAVE ”THE LAST FULL MEASURE OF DEVOTION” TO PRESERVE THE FREEDOM WE ALL ENJOY TODAY. THIS VETERANS MEMORIAL IS REVERENTLY DEDICATED TO THE MEMORY OF ALL VETERANS OF·THE ARMED FORCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, PRESENTED BY THE GRATEFUL PEOPLE OF THE VILLAGE OF OAK LAWN, ILLINOIS, AND BY THE MEMBERSHIPS OF JOHNSON-PHELPS V.F. w: POST #5220, AND GREEN OAK AMERICAN LEGION POST #757, IN COOPERATION WITH THE OAK LAWN VETERANS MEMORIAL FOUNDATION.
The following names were inscribed on the memorial, located at the Village Green:
AMES R. BAIRD, JR., LANCE CORPORAL, U.S. MARINE CORPS was killed in action on February 22, 1969, in South Vietnam. He was survived by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. John R.
Baird, and by a brother, Michael. He had eartier attended the McDonald’s Grade School and had graduated from Richard’s High School in 1968. His mother had formerty served on the
Oak Lawn Public Library Board of Directors.
WILLIAM BRADSHAW, PVT., U.S. ARMY, was killed in action during Wortd War Two.
Unable to ascertain any further information regarding this Oak Lawn serviceman.
RONALD J. BRITT, CORPORAL, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on November 4, 1967, in South Vietnam. He had entered the military service on his 19th birthday and was killed just
four days after reaching Vietnam. Britt and other American soldiers had engaged in a bitter fight. He was survived by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. Ellworth Britt, and by a twin sister, Carolyn.
He had attended Columbus Manor Grade School and graduated from Oak Lawn High School.
THOMAS S. COLE, LANCE CORPORAL, AGE 19, U.S. MARINE CORPS was killed in action on April 27, 1968, in South Vietnam. He was survived by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. Eart
W. Cole, and by a sister, Jacqueline Cole”MaxWell. Cole was killed by artillery fire. Eleven days eartier, he narrowly escaped death when an artillery round struck an ammunition dump
near his camp.
THOMAS C. CONNELLY, AGE 20, SPECIALIST, 4TH CLASS, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on May 24, 1968 in South Vietnam. He was survived by his parents, Mr. & Mrs.
Chartes Connolly, of Oak Lawn. Thomas had attended Mount Carmel High School and South East Junior College before entering the service. He was in the Army one year and
had been in Vietnam just a month. He was in the infantry when his unit was engaged in heavy fighting before getting killed.
JOHN L. CORDER, PRIVATE, U.S. ARMY, AGE 23, was killed in action on June 21,1944 in France. He had attended Cook Grade School. Corder was survived by his mother, four
sisters, and a brother who served in the Air Force. His mother organized “MOTHERS OF WORLD WAR TWO” which became a national organization during WWII. She became the
first president of the Oak Lawn unit.
EARL L. DEADMORE, CM 3/c, U.S. NAVY SEABEES (construction battalion) was killed in an automobile crash in Biloxi, Mississippi, on May 31, 1969. He had been home on furtough
after completing his first tour of duty in Vietnam and was scheduled to return shortly to Vietnam when killed. Eart was survived by his mother, Esther Walls, and by a sister,
Claudia. Their family home was located on Circle Drive in Oak Lawn. He had attended Sward Grade School before completing high school.
EUGENE J. EHRENHAFT, PRIVATE, U.S. MARINE CORPS was killed in action on March 12, 1945, on Iwo Jima. He had graduated from Simmons Grade School in Oak Lawn.
Ehrenhaft and his Marines fiercely fought from foxhole to foxhole as Marine bayonets clashed Samurai swords on this strongly fortified and heavily manned island of Iwo Jima.
After 23 days of relentless combat, 6821 Americans were killed, 5931 of them Marines, and 17,372 wounded (Ehrenhaft was killed on Day 21). Only 216 Japanese out of 21,000 were
taken prisoners but several times that amount hid in caves for months. (Reference: V.F.W. Magazine, June, 1995 edition).
JAMES R. EMERY, PRIVATE, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action in April, 1945. He was an airborne paratrooper and survived just 18 days in combat before getting killed. He had
attended St. Gerald’s Grade School before graduating from high school.
DAVID E. FITZGERALD, SPECIALIST 4th CLASS, U.S. AR Y, was killed in action on August 2, 1969, in South Vietnam. He graduated from St. Leo High School, and from the
University of Notre Dame. Upon graduating with his baccalaureate degree, he became a sales representative for Standard Oil Company. The next year he entered the military from
Oak Lawn. He was survived by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. Edward Fitzgerald, a sister, Patricia, and a brother, Kevin.
BERNARD F. FORD, AGE 34, AIRMAN FIRST CLASS, U.S. AIR FORCE, was killed in action on July 5, 1967 in South Vietnam. He was on patrol with a sentry dog when he was
hit by enemy rifle fire. Airman Ford. a grapuate from St. Patrick’s High School had been in the military service for 15 years. He was survived by a sister, Mrs. Margaret Hughes, and
two brothers. James and Joseph.
RAYMOND GIORGI, PRIVATE, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action in the Philippine Islands on October 18, 1944. Unable to ascertain any further information regarding this Oak Lawn
WILLIAM H. GIBBS, JR., AGE 19, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, U.S. MARINE CORPS was killed in action on July 5, 1968. in South Vietnam. He died of wounds suffered from an
explosion of an enemy land mine while on patrol with a unit of U.S. Marines. An honorary escort composed of 12 Marines conducted military honors. During the solumn rites at the
graveside, the Marine detachment fired a rifle salute as Taps sounded by the bugler, faded away in the distance. A Sergeant Major. in command of the Marine detachment, presented
the American flag which had draped the casket to the sorrowing parents with these comforting words:
“In behalf of the President, the Congress, and the People of the United States of America, and the United States Marine Corps, I am honored to present to you this flag of our Country under which your Son, WILLIAM H. GIBBS, JR., PRIVATE, FIRST CLASS, U.S. MARINE CORPS, had so HONORABLY, and so FAITHFULLY served.”
JOHN D. GILGENBERG, LANCE CORPORAL, U.S. MARINE CORPS, AGE 19, was killed in action on May 10, 1067 in South Vietnam. He was survived by his mother, three brothers:
David, Kenneth, and Allan. Both David and Kenneth had served in the Marine Corps. Their father, Peter Gilgenberg, died a year earlier. Corporal Gilgenberg, and a squad of Marines,
lost their lives in the explosion of a cleverly hidden Viet Cong land mine. These Marines were battling a large force of North Vietnamese regulars. Gilgenberg’s body was returned
with a Marine escort. A detachment from a marine Corps Reserve Unit of Gary, Indiana, served as a military escort of honor. A rifle salute was fired at graveside as a Marine Corp
bugler sounded taps. An American flag presentation at graveside was made on May 18, 1967 to Gilgenberg’s mother by Marine Escort, Corporal Henry Herald of Philadelphia,
HARRY L. GOOD, SERGEANT, U.S. AIR FORCE, was killed in action on December 21, 1944, over Germany. He was a tail gunner on a bomber and was wounded but continued
fighting to the end. Harry Wood was awarded the Purple Heart posthumously and was later presented to his father back in Oak Lawn. His pilot and radioman were taken prisoners by
the Germans. He had attended Cook School in his early years.
KENNETH R. GOOLEY, AGE 21, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, U.S. ARMY, 82ND AIRBOURNE DIVISION, was killed in a military accident on November 16, 1971. His primary
and secondary parachutes failed to open during a routine training jump over Fort Bragg, North Carolina. He earlier had attended McDonald Grade School. He graduated from
Richards High School, and later attended Northern Illinois University before enlisting in the Army on November 25, 1970. He was survived by his parents, John and Shirley Gooley of
Oak Lawn, and by three sisters, Janet, Diane, and Doris. He was active in the Boy Scout Activities Troop #681, and was a member of Pilgrim Faith United Church of Christ in Oak
ROBERT W. HOCK, LANCE CORPORAL, U.S. MARINE CORPS., was killed in action on August 11, 1969, in South Vietnam. Unable to ascertain any further information regarding
this Oak Lawn serviceman.
DONALD L. HOFFENKAMP, AGE 22, U.S. ARMY PRIVATE, was killed in action September 24, 1951, in South Korea. He had attended an Oak Lawn Grade School, and Lindbloom
High School. He was an apprentice bricklayer before entering the Service.
JOHN HUIZENGA, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on February 2, 1945, in Belgium. He was previously wounded in combat six months earlier while fighting
the Germans in France. Before entering the Army, John Huezenga had worked on his father’s farmland located at 99th Street and Crawford Avenue in Oak Lawn. He was one of
ten children of Mr. & Mrs. Peter Huizenga of Evergreen Park. His brother, Harry, was stationed in the Pacific Theatre during the war.
LESTER E. JAKLICH, AGE 23, U.S. AIR FORCE LIEUTENANT, was killed in action on August 10, 1944, over France. He attended Oak Lawn Cook School and graduated from St.
Gerald’s School, and later attended Morgan Park High School. Jaklich was survived by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. Frank Jaklich. His brother, Eugene Jaklich, was wounded in North
Africa. A third brother, Leonard, served in the U.S. Coast Guard during World War Two. Lester piloted P-38 and P-51 Mustang aircraft over France and Germany.
STEPHEN F. JALLOWAY, AGE 22, SERGEANT, U.S. MARINE CORPS was killed in action on December 15, 1966, in South Vietnam. He was leading 13 men against the Viet Cong
when attacked and killed. He made his home with his sister, Mrs. Robert (Rosemarie) Murphy in Oak Lawn. His parents preceded him in death.
NORBERT C. JAUCHZER, PRIVATE, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on May 18, 1944, in Italy. His brothers Lester and Bernard also served in the military during the war. Jauchzer
served in the anti-tank corp of the infantry. Before entering the Army, he was a most popular and cheerful Post Office letter carrier in Oak Lawn.
CARL L. JOHNSON, PRIVATE, U.S. ARMY, was wounded in action on August 18, 1944 and died on September 7, 1944, in France. He had served 28 months in the Army. He was
married to the former Virginia Sleep of Oak Lawn.
KURT JOHNSON, TECH SERGEANT, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on April 18, 1945, in Germany. He was an Interior Decorator before the war and lived on Kenton Avenue. His
wife, Clara, infant daughter, Corrine, and his mother were grief stricken in their great loss.
RAYMOND H. JOHNSON, TECH SERGEANT, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on March 30, 1945 in Europe. He was the son of Mr. & Mrs. Oscar Johnson of Oak Lawn. He served in
an ordinance division for two years in Oran, North Africa, and in 1945, was transferred to the Infantry in Europe where he was killed.
ROBERT E. KUHN, STAFF SERGEANT, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on February 22, 1970, in South Vietnam. Sergeant Kuhn, an artilleryman, had been awarded a battlefield
commission just days before his vehicle was ambushed by the enemy. With the paperwork incomplete , his last trip under Army orders was as a sergeant, the rank he held during his
second tour of duty in Vietnam . Besides his parents, Mr. & Mrs. William W. Kuhn of Oak Lawn, he was survived by his sister, Jeannine.
WARREN O. KENEIPP, JR., CAPTAIN, U.S. MARINE CORPS was killed in action on July 2, 1967, in South Vietnam. He was a graduate of Oak Lawn High School, and the University
of Purdue. Captain Kenelpp was survived by his wife, Cynthia, a daughter, Lori, his parents, Mr. & Mrs. Warren O. Keneipp, Sr., and by a sister, Katherine McClellan. At one time his
father was president of the Oak Lawn High School Board of Education, and Chairman of the Oak Lawn Village Board of Appeals.
JOHN F. LAMB, PRIVATE, U.S. MARINE CORPS, AGE 19, was killed in action on April 11, 1945, on the Island of Okinawa. He and his Marine Company were mopping up Japanese
troops hidden in the numerous caves when killed. He had earlier attended Covington Grade School.
ROBERT LAMB, PRIVATE, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on March 1,1945, in Germany. He was in the Infantry pursuing retreating Germans across their homeland when he was
.killed. NOTE: The two Lamb Brothers, John and Robert, were killed in action only six weeks apart. Their widowed mother, Mrs. Julia Lamb, lived in the family home in the 102nd block of Kolin
Avenue in Oak Lawn.
PAUL LELLO, LIEUTENANT, U.S. AIR FORCE, was killed in action on September 24, 1944, over Hollandia. New Guinea, in the South Pacific. His wife, Shirley, lived in the family
home on North Shore Drive in Oak Lawn. He left for overseas without ever seeing his infant son. Lelia was a bomber pilot flying in an Air Force squadron. His step-brother, Robert
Ellinger of Chicago, was also killed in action a week earlier, September 17, 1944, while also serving in New Guinea.
ROY LINN, JR., AGE 19, U.S. NAVY, SEAMAN FIRST CLASS, was killed in action on July 30, 1945. He was serving on borad the ill-fated U.S.S. INDIANAPOLIS, a navy cruiser that
was sunk in Philippine waters just 16 days before the end of World War Two. The family lived near 87th Street and Mayfield Avenue.
NOTE: The INDIANAPOLIS had delivered the atomic bomb to Tinian Island on July 16, 1945. The bomb required only proper connections to be activated. The bomb was dropped
on the City of Nagasaki on August 9th in which over 70,000 people perished. It helped to bring an end to the war. Just past midnight on July 30, 1945, a Japanese submarine torpedoed the 671 foot long navy cruiser and her 1197 man crew. She sank in just 12 minutes. About 880 men were able to jump off into the waters, where for days they battled sharks and exposure while
attempting to stay afloat. Only 316 men survived.
RICHARD J. MASTERSON, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on February 5, 1945, on Luzon in the Phillipine Islands. He had entered the service in January,
1941. Masterson was survived by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. John Knowski, who resided on 55th Avenue in Oak Lawn.
BOBBY D. MATHENY, STAFF SERGEANT, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on February 10, 1968 in S. Vietnam. Unable to ascertain any further information regarding this Oak
WILLIAM J. MC CUE, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, AGE 19, U.S. ARMY, was wounded in action in Vietnam on April 17, 1967, during a hostile mortar. attack while serving with the
Eleventh Armored Cavalry. He later was transferred to Hines Veterans Hospital in Maywood, Illinois, where his wounds were treated while remaining in a coma most of the time. He
succumbed to his wounds on August 25, 1967. Before entering the Army, McCue had attended Our Lady of Loretto Grade School and Oak Lawn Community High School. He was
the son of Mrs. Lucille McCue and the late William McCue. He was also survived by three brothers and one sister: James, Michael, Jeanne and John.
*Details of William McCue’s army service and battle death remained unknown to the veterans memorial committee until eleven days before the date of the Oak Lawn Memorial
Dedication. His name is not inscribed on the monument at this time.
EDWARD C. Me HENRY, SERGEANT, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on December 21, 1969, in S. Vietnam, just four days before Christmas. He had attended Simmons Grade
School, and Oak Lawn Community High School. He also attended St. Olafs College in Northfield, Minnesota before entering the army. His body was returned to the United States
and Church services were conducted at Pilgrims United Church in Oak Lawn. Edward was survived by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. Paul Mc Henry, a brother and two sisters.
JAMES P. MURPHY, AGE 20, PRIVATE, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action in Korea on October 17, 1951. James was a graduate of St. Gerald’s Grade School and entered the
Army in May, 1951, and arrived in Korea in August. He was survived by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. Charles Murphy, by three brothers and four sisters of Oak Lawn.
JOSEPH S. PERYSIAN. SEAMAN FIRST CLASS. U.S. NAVY, was killed in action on March 14, 1968, in South Vietnam. He was serving aboard an armored troop carrier patrol craft
which struck a mine in one of the many rivers located in Vietnam. He was a member of St. Albert the Great Grade School’s first graduating class, and was also a member of the first
graduating class of St. Lawrence High School. In addition to his parents, he was also survived by a sister, Terry. NOTE: By fate or coincidence, Comrades Bill Gibbs, John Gilg~nberg, and Joe Perysian lived on the same block of Oak Park Avenue since childhood. They were neighborhood kids and friends, being the same ages. The unincorporated area in which they lived was located
in, and served by, the Oak Lawn Post Office facility at that time. Like so many of their comrades before them, they answered the call to duty. They are our
Honored Dead who went overseas to preserve world peace, and preserve America’s freedom and liberty. These three patriots were killed within eleven months of each other.
Their bodies were returned for burial.
LESLIE P. PHELPS, AGE 28, U.S. ARMY, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, was wounded in action on October 27, 1944 in Belgium, and later died in a hospital on November 19, 1944. He had
landed on Normandy on “0” Day,’June 6, 1944. F,lhelps had two brothers in the military service. They were the sons of Mr. & Mrs. Asa Phelps. Before the war, Leslie Phelps was a
scoutmaster for an Oak Lawn Boy Scout Troop. NOTE: The Johnson-Phelps V.F.W. Post #5220 of Oak Lawn, Illinois, was named in honor of Private Raymond H. Johnson and Private First Class Leslie P. Phelps. A group of returning war veterans got together to form a Verterans of Foreign Wars Post. The names of twenty-three young men killed in action from the Oak Lawn area were put into a hat and two names were drawn.
FRED POTE, JR., AGE 19, U.S. MARINE CORPS was killed in action on March 8, 1969, in South Vietnam. He was survived by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. Fred Pote, Sr., residing on
Crawford Avenue. He had graduated previously from Gaddes Grade School, and from the Oak Lawn Community High School.
STEVE POHANCEK, SPECIALIST FOURTH CLASS, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1970, in South Vietnam. He died on foreign soil being only
19 years of age. The Pohancek’s lived on Kimball Place in Oak Lawn.
KENNETH STEVENS, U.S. NAVY, SEAMAN FIRST CLASS, was killed in action on May 11, 1945, in waters off Okinawa. He was at his battle station on board the navy aircraft carrier
U.S.S. BUNKER HILL. Under heavy attack, bombs from two Japanese kamikaze planes exploded on the carrier’s flight deck. After the battle, when flames were put out, Ken’s body
was buried at sea with full military honors having all the ship’s company in attendance for services. Kenneth worked for the Illinois Bell Telephone Company after graduating from
Blue Island High School and before that, from Covington Grade School.
ROBERT SALIHAR, TECH SERGEANT, U.S. AIR FORCE, was killed in action on December 21, 1944, over Germany. He was a tail gunner on a B-24 bomber. His brother,
Warren J. Salihar was also serving in the Air Force. The Salihar brothers were first cousins to Lester Jaklich. Their mothers were sisters.
HENRY SCHENKEL, CORPORAL, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on “0” day, June 6, 1944, at Normandy, France. He belonged to a field artillery battalion. Henry Schenkel was
a member of the Oak Lawn Christian Reformed Church. His father, Joseph, three sisters and one brother survived him.
STEVEN SCHOllIN, AGE 25, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, U.S. ARMY AIRBORNE, was killed in an airplane crash on August 15, 1942. He and 16 other paratroopers were killed while on
airborne maneuvers over Peru, Massachusettes. Schollin, together with his parents, and young sister, immigrated to the United States from Sweden, and in 1938, made their home
in Oak Lawn. When his call to arms came in January, he immediately volunteered for service in one of the most active commands, the U.S. ARMY PARATROOPERS.
CHARLES E. SCHWIEMAN, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, U.S. MARINE CORPS lost his life in an airplane crash over Florida in May 1944, while on a training mission. He graduated
earlier from Covington Grade School. The first Gold Star to be placed upon this Oak Lawn School’s service flag was for Charles.
TERRENCE l . SOUHRADA, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, U.S. ARMY was killed in action on February 23, 1966 in South Vietnam. He was awarded the Silver Star (posthumously) for
gallantry, valor, and devotion to duty. He was survived by his mother and a brother, Melvin and by his step-father, Joseph J. Ryskie. He had graduated from Oak Lawn High School in
1962 and from Covington Grade School in 1938. He attended Southern Illinois University for a short time. His last job was with Continental Can Company. Services were conducted
for him in St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Oak Lawn.
MICHAEL P. TROlIA, AGE 20, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, U.S. MARINE CORPS was killed in action on August 26, 1968, in South Vietnam. He died of wounds inflicted by fragments
from the explosion of a mortar shell. After high school graduation, he was employed at the Monsanto Company Plastic Plant in Bridgeview. He later enlisted in the Marine Corps.
Surviving was his father, his step-mother, two brothers, a half sister, two half-brothers, and two step-brothers.
EDWARD TRYBUlOWSKI, TECH SERGEANT, U.S. ARMY AIRBORNE, was killed in action on October 11, 1944, in Holland. He entered the Army on March 21, 1941. He married
Gladys Klinghamer while home on leave. His younger brother served in the Air Force. His parents resided on 53rd Avenue in Oak Lawn.
NOTE: Trybulowski and his 508th Parachute Regiment dropped behind enemy lines from C-47 transport planes in the early hours on “0” DAY, December 6, 1944. Their mission was
to capture the French Town of Ste. Mere Egliss, to prevent the Germans from interfering with the Normandy Beach landings. Their orders were to secure several bridges over two
important rivers. His regiment operated mostly behind enemy lines without relief, without any outside communications, and without replacement of casualties. All assigned missions
were accomplished in the first 34 hours. Later, with other units of their Division, they pushed the German Army back many miles capturing large numbers of enemy troops, tanks, and
trucks. Heavy fighting was encountered, but they kept driving the Germans East, South and North.
Several years after the war, Hollywood made a movie of this historic and heroic paratrooper landing. entitled, ”The Longes Day”. Actor John Wayne played the lead role.
HOMAS C. VANDERBURG, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action during Wortd War Two. Unable to ascertian any further information regarding this Oak Lawn
HERBERT J. VOLKMAN, PRIVATE FIRST CLASS, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action in 1945, in the Philippine Islands campaign. He fought and died on the big island of Luzon
where the fighting was fierce and the casualties ran high. The Japanese mountain stronghold harbored over 200,000 troops willing to sacrifice their lives to the bitter end.
WILBUR WILCOX, PRIVATE, UNION ARMY, was killed in action in May, 1863, in Vicksburg, Mississippi. He was born in Mayfield, Fulton County in the State of New York. He was
survived by his father, Willard, his mother, Temperance, and brothers, Willard and Barton. NOTE: The Wilcox Family established a new home and farm in the area of Black Oaks
Grove, Illinois. It was located near the settlement and Wilbur became the first schoolmaster within the settlement. (Eventually, the settlement of Black Oaks Grove became Oak Lawn,
Illinois, in 1909, when it was incorporated into a village.) After Wilbur Wilcox, and his brother Willard, joined the Union Army, they were transported by horse and wagon to Cairo, Illinois,
sailed down the Mississippi River to join General Grant’s Army in the deep South. Wilbur Wilcox was killed in the battle of Vicksburg in May, 1863. His brother, Willard, was seriously
wounded the next year. After the close of the Civil War, Willard left the area to relocate in San Francisco, California, where he married. He soon sent for the rest of the Wilcox Family
to join him in the earty 1870’s. (Reference: Files of Oak Lawn Public Library.)
JAMES E. WITHERSPOON, AGE 21, SERGEANT, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on July 29, 1968, in South Vietnam. He had been in Vietnam for two months, and had been in the
Army about two years. He was survived by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. John C. Witherspoon, and by four brothers, and two sisters.
RONALD L. ZACH, SPECIALIST FOURTH CLASS, U.S. ARMY, was killed in action on April 3, 1968, in South Vietnam. He was in the 23rd Infantry, 4th Batallion mechanized. He
graduated from high school in June, 1966. He was survived by his wife, Susan Zach of Oak Lawn, and by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. William Zach of Bridgview, Illinois.
The memorial’s low profile provides visibility and openness. Its white gleaming wide concrete floor and its black polished granite walls gives ‘contrast and appearance of height. The front side features the enlarged official seals of the five branches of the military services. This memorial honors these who served in the U.S. Armed Forces. The three flag poles will fly the colors of the Village, State and Nation.
The reverse side lists, in memoriam, a Gold Star Roll of Honor commemorating the names of fifty-two valiant heroes from the Oak Lawn area killed during wartime defending America’s freedoms. Its rear base has inscribed thereon ‘the names, dates, and number of those killed during each of the ten major wars fought by the United States since the Revolutionary War to 1996.
In 2010, another name was added:
Thomas Edward Murray Jr., Age 24, Private First Class, U.S. Army. PFC Murray was killed June 5th, 1962 while on assignment in South Korea when the truck he was
riding in as a passenger collided with a train in Chochi-Won, South Korea. PFC Murray graduated from Oak Lawn Community High School in 1955 and was a resident of Oak
Lawn for most of his life. He was survived by his wife Margaret Murray, daughter Dale Murray and son Thomas E. Murray III, siblings and parents. PFC Murray’s name was
added to the Veterans Memorial in 2010 through the efforts of his children and the Village of Oak Lawn.
Memorial Day is not a day of just eating hot dogs and drinking beer. It is a day to remember those who protected the country and the village.