By Rick Palsgrove
Groveport loves its military veterans and is honoring them with a special exhibit at Groveport Town Hall.
The exhibit, titled, “We Love Our Veterans,” will be held through March 25 at Groveport Town Hall, 648 Main St. The city of Groveport’s exhibit is recognizing honorably discharged military veterans from all branches of service who reside in Franklin County. The exhibit includes many items from Motts Military Museum, the Groveport Heritage Museum, the Central Ohio Military Museum, and items from individuals and families.
“Bob Traphagan from Central Ohio Military Museum in Harrisburg, Ohio, was very gracious and excited in displaying items for our exhibit, filling two tables and two cases,” said Kristiauna Trelay, executive assistant at Groveport Town Hall. “We also had a few families who provided several items to display. Everything filled up quite nicely, just as we envisioned for Town Hall’s front lobby.”
Trelay said there are many interesting items on display, including:
•A metal punji spike, which was placed in the ground and camouflaged with grass or leaves with the intent to pierce through one’s foot causing injury and infections during the Vietnam War.
•An Honor Book about the Marine Corps that PFC William R. Butsch received for his outstanding achievement at the San Diego Marine Corps base during his training period.
“Paired with this is an article referencing how Butsch’s sergeant stated he had only given out four books among the 200 plus Marines he has recruited,” said Trelay.
•In the Second Sino-Japanese War prior to World War II, the American Volunteer Group pilots of Flying Tigers carried notices known as a “blood chit” printed in Chinese that informed the locals who may come across armed services that foreign pilots were fighting for China and that they were obliged to help them.
•A flag that was flown over Afghanistan during Operation Freedom’s Sentinel on July 6, 2015, that was presented to American Legion-Lithopolis 677.
Plus many more items of both a personal and military nature.
“It’s important for us to honor and remember our veterans, not just on Veterans Day,” said Trelay. “Everyone has a story, special memories, or belongings of a loved one who has served our country, and the ‘We Love Our Veterans Exhibit’ is a great way for loved ones to honor a family member by sharing their story.”
Additionally, Trelay said the city of Groveport wanted “to spread love and brighten a veteran’s day during these cold months with Valentines For Veterans.”
Town Hall staff collected more than 100 Valentines for Veterans cards that were delivered to the VA Medical Center in Chillicothe.
“Also students from Groveport Elementary and guests at our Feb. 12 Sweetheart Dance wrote letters that will be included,” said Trelay. “We are excited to have over 100 cards before delivering them on Feb. 14. There were so many that caught my eye, but I really love how creative some of the cards are with adding extra decorations inside with their messages.”
For information about the We Love Our Veterans Exhibit, call 614-836-3333.