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franklin county times

VFW post helps to obtain free markers for veterans

By By Steve Gillespie / staff writer
August 8, 2004
Members of the Stephenson-DeLauncey Post No. 79 of the Veterans of Foreign Wars is offering to mark the graves of area veterans.
Chuck McElroy, the senior vice commander of the post who started the project, said it is something he has wanted to organize for a long time.
The U.S. government has bronze grave markers available that measure 24-by-12 inches that will be provided for any qualified veteran of the military.
The marker may include the veteran's name, rank, branch of service, date of birth and date of death. They also can include one of more than 30 authorized emblems symbolizing the veteran's religious preference.
McElroy said members of the local VFW will install the markers if asked to help. Other options are available with the markers at a cost, including personal inscriptions, a granite base or a mounted bronze flower vase; a different style of grave marker also may be bought from the government.
McElroy said people will have to be patient with the process of obtaining a grave marker.
McElroy started the program after working to obtain a grave marker earlier this year for Montague DeLauncey, one of the two people the local VFW Post is named for. In service with the U.S. Navy, DeLauncey was lost at sea during World War I when his ship was sunk by a German submarine.
The post is also named for the late Frank G. Stephenson, who served in the U.S. Army and died of pneumonia overseas during World War I.
This year marks the 70th anniversary of the post, which was chartered in 1934. New officers for the post were sworn in last month. They are: James E. Slayton, commanding officer; McElroy, senior vice commander; John Taylor, junior vice commander; and Leroy Morris, quartermaster.

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