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Jerry Taylor Memorial Plaza

Credit to 
Greg Schlieve, post commander for American Legion Post 73 for all photos up to the plaques
with our classmates names.


Thanks to the Vietnam Vet

Today let’s honor the Vietnam Vet
He served our country, did you thank him yet?
No matter what you thought of the Vietnam War
Thank the Veteran, we’re the ones he fought for.
The Vietnam Vet is a man of pride
A man of honor who didn’t hide
When he was called to serve us all
The Vietnam Vet stood proud and tall.
He left his home, his family and friends
Some never made it back home again
Some were shattered and will never be the same
And some will always remember their pain.
Please, thank a Vietnam Veteran today
Look him in the eyes and mean what you say
And don’t be surprised to see tears in his eyes
Yes, thank a Veteran while he’s still alive.
Sandi Estridge Eucks © 9/2/08
If you were in the military and want your picture, branch,
places served and dates of service added, please send it to or or
facebook us at Sunnyside, WA High School Class of 1965

Veterans Memorial honoring all Veterans located on 9th and Edison.
The American Legion is dedicated to helping veterans, and their family members. Building a Veterans Memorial in the center of our City is a fundamental Obligation of our Post. We live in a free society and we need to remember how that came to be.....and how it is being preserved.

The Jerry Taylor Veterans Plaza was named after long-time Post Commander Jerry Taylor. Jerry was active in the community all of his life. After serving in WWII, he came home and within 20 years was the Mayor of Sunnyside  during the 1960's and 1970's. He was the American Legion Post Commander for 20 years, and made sure a flag was set on every veteran’s grave on each Memorial Day.

There are two themes to this Memorial. The first theme involves the grey granite walls that will be engraved with information about individual veterans. Such information as their name, rank, unit, where served, branch of service, and the years they were in the military.

The second theme involves the black granite walls. These walls will be engraved with information, such as the names of all veterans from Sunnyside who were killed-in-action, or held as prisoners-of-war. Also information about military medals such as the Purple Heart, CIB, Medal of Honor, Silver Star, Bronze Star, etc. Other information regards quotes, songs, and the general military history of our nation.

Our mission is to heal the souls of our veterans. To their deeds.....and to acknowledge to them that we understand fully that we are a free people because of them. And we wish to pay them tribute.

You can purchase a plaque for a veteran on this Memorial.
Price is $300 each. Contact Greg Schlieve at (509) 781-0799
or Email:

They are in the process of creating a Website.

Double Click on the picture to enlarge it.

A Salute to Heroes Honoring all Who Served

Veterans Memorial from front to back

Picture shows how many more granite walls will go on the Veterans Memorial.   Foundations that are perpendicular to side sidewalk are for the grey granite walls that honor individual veterans.   And foundations that are angled—creating a circular pattern are for black granite walls that tell the story of the military.
South end looking straight up the sidewalk towards
Edison Ave

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Picture of the end black walls that list everyone from Sunnyside who was killed-in-action during America’s wars---going back to WWI.  Dale MacArthur’s, (our classmate) name is on this one.
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This is a quote from a Vietnam veteran who was in battle, and when the Division General arrived on the battlefield after the battle was over, was said to place his hands on his hips, and after looking around at the American soldiers who had fought in the battle….was said to exclaimed in awe the words “where do we get such men”.  
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This picture was to show the progress of the Veterans Memorial, and how the black granite Walls are formed in a circle.  The Wall closest to the viewer shows a letter written by a soldier from the Seattle area, thus something close to home for many of us as we also live in Washington state.   But it is hoped that those who have not seen the Veterans Memorial will get an idea of what is getting engraved on the black Walls and how they are being displayed.  

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This is a picture that shows how the 6 black granite Walls form a circle.   On the left is a Wall engraved with a quote from an infantry soldier during the Vietnam war.  The 3 Walls on the right show how they together form a circle of 6 black granite Walls.  The center Wall of those Walls on the right is engraved with military information and history of the Purple Heart.  It has a ceramic metal in-lay of the Purple Heart medal, using real gold for the lettering.  The two Walls flanking the Purple Heart Wall are engraved with information about PTSD and how an infantry soldier will automatically have PTSD once he has been in combat, especially when engaged in combat repeatedly.   In the Vietnam War 85% of those who died in that war were in the infantry, as they were the ones who were on the offense hunting down the soldiers who served in the North Vietnamese Army.  Most soldiers in Vietnam were in rear areas where they were in defensive positions with their duties being to carry out support for those in the infantry.  It was all a team effort.
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This picture shows the second circle of black granite Walls that were installed.  The center Wall is all about the Purple Heart medal and who is entitled to wear the medal.  Flanking the Purple Heart Medal is a Wall describing how PTSD is developed in soldiers while engaged in combat.  The picture shows how the black granite Walls are displayed in a circle.
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Danny Boy This lament is of a mother whose oldest son has gone off to war, and she knows not when he will return……and fears that she will never see him again
Oh Captain My Captain Written by Walt Whitman upon hearing of President Lincolns’ death…..and ever echoed by soldiers when hearing their leader’s death on the battlefield
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The center Wall is engraved with the names of those men from Sunnyside who were once held as a Prisoner-of-War in either WWII or the Korean War.  They have never been recognized in our city, nor have their sacrifices been recognized by future generations.  Until this Wall was erected, they had been forgotten.  Thus, it is only proper that as soon as we installed the two Walls with the names of those men from Sunnyside who were killed-in-action, that we next honored these men.  Of the two Walls adjacent to the POW Wall, the one on the left tells of the history of Veterans Day for our nation, that became a national holiday spontaneously at the end of WWI, and why it is celebrated at a certain time on a certain day…..never to be changed.  The Wall on the right is from a proclamation made by President Wilson during WWI in honoring all mothers who had lost a son during that war.  To this day that tradition is still carried on with each family member getting a Gold Star pin to wear, that has one ounce of gold in each pin.
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In rememberance

These 6 black granite Walls make up our second circle of black granite Walls.  This circle of Walls are installed in the very center of the Jerry Taylor Veterans Memorial.  This picture shows the progress that we’ve made since we installed the first two black Walls at the far southern end of the Memorial that were engraved with the names of all men from Sunnyside who were Killed-In-Action in our nation’s wars since WWI.  The two KIA Walls were installed right before Veterans Day in 2014.  Today we have 22 large granite Walls installed, with 2 more grey granite Walls that will soon be installed.  And when that happens, will make a total of 24 large granite Walls before next Memorial Day rolls around in 2024.

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The Wall facing the viewer tells the history of how TAPS came to be composed during the Civil War.  These 6 Walls comprise the first circle of black granite Walls installed at the Jerry Taylor Veterans Memorial, of a total of three circles of black granite Walls that will one day be installed.
These 6 Walls were installed during the
2015-2017 time-period.
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These 3 black granite Walls complete the 2nd circle of black granite Walls that sits in the very center of the Veterans Memorial.  The center Wall is about the Medal called the Combat Infantry Badge and is inlayed with a ceramic image of the medal.  The Wall on the left is a quote written by a Marine who served in WWI and was awarded two Medal of Honor medals during his time in the military.  The Wall on the right is a quote from General Omar Bradley, a famous WWII General..

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The Declaration of Independence
(The Preamble)
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The Star-Spangle Banner
First and 4th Stanzas

This quote by Schopenhauer explains a common occurrence in combat: that of soldiers suddenly running forward to go to the aid of a wounded soldier, without any thought or regard for their own life.  It has been estimated by the military that as many as 15% to 20% of the men who died in the Vietnam War died because they suddenly got the urge to run forward, under fire, and go to the aid of a downed comrade.   To witness acts such as this during combat causes fellow soldiers to wonder why their fellow soldier risked his life in what appeared to be a foolish act of courage, as to them they thought that in doing so the soldier would surely die.  But on another day, in another firefight or battle, he suddenly finds himself doing the same thing.  Later he realizes that he was very lucky not to be killed.  And for a long time, he reflects on what made him do what he did, which he now agrees was foolhardy.  What made him do what he did is a question that he will forever ask himself, as it was against all logic.  Thus, this quote answers that question.   We all live our lives within our normal ego state of consciousness where our senses guide us, and we seldom experience a deeper sense of ourselves; that part of ourselves that can arise during a moment of crisis, a part of ourselves that we are normally not aware of……that lies deep within our every day state of being.  In time the soldier comes to realize that it was not an act of courage on his part, no it was something more profound.   He finally realizes that he had encountered the very essence of what it means to be a human being.  A major part of our essence as a human being is to love one another….at all costs, as God loves us.  The soldier realizes that he could not have lived another day if he had not gone to the aid of his friend during that moment of crisis.  He realizes that he and the other are ONE.  This quote tries to answer a profound question that most combat soldiers will encounter at some time during heavy combat.  Their willingness to die for a fellow comrade was not something that they consciously thought they would do, nor did they ever think that they would so quickly be willing to die for a comrade who was in trouble.  It is a true mystery that this quote tries to answer.
Credit to Kathy Schlotfeldt Wheeler for the pictures of the walls

Double click on the picture to enlarge them.

PEC 4 Arthur Bradley Schlieve Wall 1-North side—col 1; row 9
FPB 3/C Douglas L. Colley  Wall 2-South side—col 2; row
SPEC 4 Doug Householder   Wall 2-South side—col 3; row 5
SGT Jack Mickelson               Wall 2-South side—col 1; row 12
SPEC 5 Juan Roberto Castro  Wall 3-North side—col 2; row 1
TEC 5 David Eirich  Wall 3-North side—col 3; row 15
SSGT Ronnie Nash  Wall 3-North side—col 3; row 12
SGT Elvin Stelling  Wall 3-North side—col 3; row 7
SGT John Garrison Wall 3-South side—col 3; row 10
SPEC 5 Henry Heberlein Wall 3-South side—col 4; row 6 
SPEC 4 Garry Maling Wall 3-South side—col 3; row 6
CT3 John Rowland Wall 3-South side—col 2; row 1
SSGT Michael McCoy Wall 4-North side—col 2; row 4
SPEC 4 Edward Laverman Wall 4-South side—col 1; row 9
SGT Richard Fallert  Wall 5-North side—col 3, row 8
EN 2 (SS) Vern Clift  Wall 5-South side—col 4; row 12
SPEC 4 Archie John Becker  Wall 6-North side—col 4; row 13
AIRMAN 3/C Gary Herndon  Wall 6-North side—col 1; row 12
SGT Dale Alan MacArthur Wall 6-North side—col 2; row 11
SGT Duane E. Ruff  Wall 6-North side—col 1; row 11
SGT (T) Gregory Lee Wilkinson Wall 6-South side—col 3; row 14
SPEC 5 Juan “Bob” Castro  Wall 6-South side—col 4; row 11 
Garry Roy Maling
US Army
Spec 4
543rd Supply Co Vietnam
1966 - 1969

Michael McCoy
US Air Force
1967 - 1974
I entered the US Air Force in December 1967.  After tech school, I was stationed at Ona Point, Okinawa then Darmstadt and Augsburg, West Germany in 1971 until 1974.

Ron Den Boer
US Coast Guard
1967 - 1970

Vern L. Clift EN2 SS
US Navy
Oct 1964- Nov 1971
US Submarine Service
USS Ronquil SS396

Sergeant Dale Alan MacArthur

Vietnam claims local soldier
Sergeant Dale Alan MacArthur, 22, suffered an apparent heart attack 8 Dec (1969) while driving a jeep on patrol duty in South Vietnam at the Phan Rang Air Base.
While attending Y.V.C. he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and having spent one year in Alaska, he was serving his second tour of duty in Vietnam. Having volunteered for special duty, he had been assigned to the Air Force Rangers, as a member of the 821st Special Combat Police Squadron, known as the Blue Berets.
Sgt. MacArthur arrived in the Yakima Airport under military escort of Sgt. Richard D. Burke of Sunnyside at 11 p.m. Monday, 15 Dec (1969).

Daryl Dean Graff
He served in the First Calvary Air Borne during the Vietnam War and was a supervisor for Unocal Oil in the Cook Inlet fields

Ed Laverman
Served in the United States Army
1965 – 1968
Combat Engineer – 18th Engineer Brigade
Served 18 months in Dong Ba Thin, Vietnam
Doug Dobbs
US Navy

Duane Stark
US Army
Duane served in the U S Army in Vietnam
and was a liftime member of the VFW

Bradley Schlieve
US Army

Dennis Felker
US Air Force

John Rowland
US Army Vietnam Veteran
serving from 1967 to 1968

Kenneth Marion Berg
US Air Force

Richard ''Doug'' Douglas Larson
US Army

Doug was a pilot of a 747-400 and flew a CH-47 Chinook during his time as an Army Aviator. He also served as instructor in the Army for DC6s, CH-47 Chinooks and Hueys, and was a bush pilot in Alaska.

Doug received the Army Commendation Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Air Medal 36th OLC, Bronze Star.
He was a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars
and the American Legion

Gary Herndon
US Air Force

Mike Klippert
US Air Force
1967 – 1971
Carswell AFB, TX
3 years at Mildenhall in England
X-ray technician

Delbert Bell
US Army
9-65 – 11-65 Ft Hood CA
11-65 – 2-66 Ft Gordon GA
2-66 – 3-66 Ft Benning GA
4-66 – 4-67 Viet Nam
4-67 – 9-68 Ft Hood TX
11-69 – 7-70 Berlin
8-70 – 8-71 Viet Nam
9-71 – 8-74 Panama
9-74 – 12-77 Ft Riley KN
12-77 – 12-80 Weisbaden
1-81 – 6-83 Ft Dix NJ
7-83 – 11-86 New York

Dick Booth
US Army

Mike Miller
US Navy

Gary Lambdin
US Navy

Stanley Merritt Ralph
US Army
Oct 13, 1946 – Apr 24 2006

Doug Wyatt
US Marine Corps
Doug retired from USMC after 25 years, as Lt Col.  He also retired from Sky West as the Safety Director.  He lived over in Abu Dhabi for approx. 6 years with his family and he worked for their military as an advisor.

Steve Graff
US Army
1967 to 1970
SP5 with Combat Engineers
Darmstadt Germany

Bob Wade
Army 3 years
Hanau Germany   12 months 
Schweinfurt, Germany 6 months
Chu Lai Vietnam 10 ½ months

Larry Stoneking
Received Purple Heart for injury received while driving heavy equipment to make a landing area

Jerry Stoneking
Stationed in Korea

Phil Cockburn
US Army

Dave Newcomb
Served in the US ARMY from 1965-1968
Stationed in Munich Germany in the 9th Calvary
Discharged as an Specialist E-5

Mark Harry
US Coast Guard
1965 to 1969
Served on the East Coast
Reached E-5 while on a new Cutter, the Galliton

Gary Simmons
Marine Corp Reserves
Yakima, Wa

Jerry Snyder
Seabee Battalion in Vietnam
Admirals Staff in Alaska

Gary Crowe
US Army
Germany and Korea

Robert Walling
US Air Force Officer
24 years
After I flunked out of YVC I got drafted (so I joined the Air Force).  I am not a hero.  During my 24 years in the Air Force the closest I came to combat was divorcing my practice wife.  While I was enlisted I spent time in Europe and wound up the first sergeant of a Communication Squadron in upstate New York before I was commissioned.    As an officer I was a research scientist and was exiled to a foreign country called Texas.   Other classmates delineate where they saw action.  I graduated from 8 universities and invented a bunch of stuff during my Air Force career.  I am not a hero.  I salute our classmates
that did “real” military service

Tom England
US Army
Ft. Eustus, Va   
Vietnam one year
1966 – 1968

Doug Colley
US Navy

David Birchard
US Air Force
1965 - 2010
1965 – 1966  Lackland AFB
1966 – 1966  Sheppard AFB
1966 – 1968  Malmstrom AFB
1968 – 1969  Turkey
1970 – 1971  Barksdale AFB
1971 – 1973  Malmstrom AFB
1973 – 1973  Vietnam
1973 – 1973  Thailand
1974 – 1975  Malmstrom AFB
1975 – 1977  Turkey
1977 – 1979  Duluth AFB
1979 – 1980  Sheppard AFB
1981 – 1981  Korea
1982 – 1983  England
1983 – 1989  Germany
1990 – 1991  Peterson AFB
1991 – 1992  Civ-AF Peterson AFB
1992 – 2010  Civ-DFAS Denver, Colorado

Served a little over 25 years (Dec 65 - Mar 91) in the Air Force".  Also, 1 year working FOR the Air Force as a civilian, and 18 years working for the DFAS (Defense Finance and Accounting Service) as a civilian.  I retired from the Air Force as a Master Sergeant in 1991 and retired from DFAS as a Lt. Col. equivalent.

Paul Alderman
US Army
1968 - 1970
Vietnam  1969

Gary Lester       
Advancement ceremony to Chief Petty Officer
aboard submarine tender USS Orion in 1978

Mike Fisher

Don Kresse
US Air Force
SAC, 8th AF
South and Southwest US

David Lester
US Army
Artillery Unit

David Eirich
US Navy
1965 – 1969

Dennis Ebenal
US Army

Yakima Firering Center. Entered basic at Fort Lewis in May 1967 and honorably discharged May of 1969.

Stationed at Fort Gordon GA in May and June, 1967 
and Fort Lee Virgina
Phan Rang, South Vietnam with the 101st

I was in Vietnam 6 weeks. I was sent home on emergency leave when my dad died on Christmas eve 1967 and was reassiged to the Firing Center for the remainder of my tour.

Henry Heberlein
U.S. Army

John Garrison
U.S. Army

George Krohling  
U.S. Navy
20 years
Nurses assistant at Battle Creek Veterans Administration

Alfred Schrank 
US Army
1967 to 1969

Duane Ruff
Air Force
1968 - 1971
Taipei, Taiwan

Tom Broers
US Air Force
1965 - 1969
Weapons Mechanic


Alvin Howe

Drill sergeant 104th division training United States Army Reserves (USAR), Retired after 24 years
737Th Transportation Company, and 104th division 

Alvin Howe Continued
Quang Tri Vietnam 1969
Cecil Bronkhorst
US Army Reserves

Dale Delp
1966   6 months
US Navy
Discharged because of hearing impairment

Robert Amundson
US Army
Drafted and entered service on 26 January 1971
In Vietnam from 27 September 1971 until 17 June 1972
Discharged (honorably) on 25 October 1972.
Received a Bronze Star Medal
Achieved the rank of SP-5

Tom Marshall
US Army
1967 - 1970

Leland Vaughn
US Air Force
1966 - 1969
Carswell AFB  2 yrs
Germany  19 months

Elvin Stelling
US Army
1968 - 1970

Ron Nash
US Army
1966 - 1973

Jack Michelsen
US Army
1968 - 1970

Doug Householder
US Army
1966 - 1972

Archie J. “AJ” Becker, Jr
United States Army
honorable discharge

James Dale Bowers
U S Air Force
1966 thru 1970
Stayed in US
Very proud to serve

Wayne Steinbacher
Wayne enlisted in the Navy and served in the Vietnam War aboard the USS Oklahoma City, returning home in 1969. 

Jon St. Mitchell  
Arizona National Guard and Vietnam Vet

Bobby Castro 
Bob enlisted in the US Army in 1968;
his unit was deployed to Vietnam serving a tour
before being honorably discharged in 1969

Wayne Ruby
recruited into the United States Navy. After boot camp, Wayne was one of three chosen from his company to go to San Diego and teach new recruits. He served at the Cubi Point Naval Air Station in Bataan, Philippines and
did an 18-month sea tour on the USS Hornet.

Tim Cole with 45th Dustoff 7/67 - 7/68, Long Bien

Heroic as Hell – The Dustoff Pilots of The Vietnam War
Click here
Apr 22, 2019 Nikola Budanovic, Guest Author
Medevac Nam.

During those very risky moments, the medic and crew chief would jump into the fire and load casualties into the helicopter with the assistance of nearby soldiers.

Among a variety of iconic scenes of the Vietnam War depicted in movies, documentaries, and news coverage, there is one in particular that makes this “first-ever televised conflict” instantly recognizable.

The image, accompanied by a specific sound, is the sight of a Bell UH-1 Iroquois or “Huey” flying over the jungle suppressing enemy fire, deploying soldiers, or evacuating wounded GIs.

A UH-1 Iroquois in Vietnam.
While helicopters were used to some extent in Korea, it wasn’t until the Vietnam War that the idea of a helicopter ambulance corps was fully developed.

This was due to the necessity of using aerial transport to evacuate the wounded in Vietnam, as dictated by the terrain. Since most of the combat activity was in the jungle, roads proved useless even if they were nearby.

South Vietnam. A UH-1D Medevac helicopter takes off to pick up an injured member of the 101st Airborne Division, near the demilitarized zone.

Date 16 October 1969

Ambushes and mines made land routes very unpredictable, for the jungle belonged to the Viet Cong.

However, the skies were off-limits for the guerrilla forces, making the Huey one of U.S. Army’s most important assets.

This article is dedicated to the “Dustoff” men–the medics and pilots who rushed into “hot” zones and willingly risked their lives to rescue as many soldiers they could. The name comes from the call sign of the 57th Medical Detachment which began operating in Vietnam in 1962.

Dust Off in Nam. Photogrpaher Unknown.
“Dustoff” soon became synonymous with all helicopter ambulance units operating in Vietnam.

A well-trained and experienced crew could provide medical treatment for wounded personnel in the field within just 35 minutes.

The crew usually consisted of four men–two pilots with one acting as a commander, a medic assigned to evacuate evacuating the wounded, and the crew chief whose role was also to keep the chopper in top condition.

Once in action, the pilot and the helicopter commander remained in the aircraft, ready for take-off. The commander would maintain radio communication with the unit requesting evacuation and headquarters.
Tim Cole with 45th Dustoff 7/67 - 7/68, Long Bien