Military ServicesPosted: Updated:
Each Memorial Day weekend the men and women who have defended our country by placing flags throughout the cemetery. This tradition began as a love story. Click the video player to hear more or read on for the story.
"It was born out of a man's love for his wife and his desire to help ease her feelings of emptiness caused by the World War II loss of her first husband."
"Marine Pfc. Claude D. Shoemaker was killed in the Solomon Islands in 1942. His body was finally brought home to rest and was interred in Springfield, MO."
"Bessie, his widow, later married George R. Brown and moved to Spokane. Bessie was never really at peace with the death of her first husband and longed for a way to pay tribute to his memory."
"So, in an effort to give something meaningful to his wife, George Brown purchased a military casket flag and approached Fairmount with the request that it be dedicated to the memory of Pfc. Shoemaker and flown at the Iwo Jima Memorial in Fairmount's Garden of Valor. The flag was dedicated on July 30, 1970."
The Browns now lie at Fairmount, he as a veteran of the U.S. Army Infantry and later the Air Force and she as one of Missouri's first to join the women of the Army Air Corps. Above them are the flags that salute all the men and women who gave their lives.
Courtesy: Duane Broyels, President of Fairmount Memorial Association and the book "Heritage from Heroes."