Wall of Honor a Reminder of Sacrifices Made
Photographs of service members are displayed on a wall at the Community Center in Red Bud Park. Only a few, but each picture is a daily reminder of the sacrifices made on their behalf for the United States of America.
Most of the men are long gone, but a few still remain and it was those men and others who helped enhance the Wall of Honor.
“Fred Tanaka, one of the veterans on our photo wall was living in Hawaii when it was bombed Dec. 7, 1941. He was 5 years of age when Hawaii was put under martial law,” said Butch Swanson, who helped organize the wall. Swanson and Phil McDonald are both veterans. McDonald approached the Marlow City Council in April to present the Wall of Honor idea, as the building is owned by the city. It also serves as the Delta Senior Nutrition Center for daily lunches throughout the week.
At the council meeting, McDonald had current pictures of Marlow’s Wall of Honor, then showed pictures of one in Duncan for comparison. The council gave him the green light for updating Marlow’s display. Prior to the updated version, the photos were just loosely framed in a single large frame, flanked by the American flag and the Oklahoma flag.
Now there is no mistaking what the wall means – WALL OF HONOR in large letters, along with CELEBRATING OUR VETERANS directly below it. A large blue star is at the top above the center of the wording, and two red striping lines frame the top and the bottom of Wall of Honor title. Centered directly beneath the titles is a framed triangle-folded American flag featuring four stars. Currently, 31 photos of area veterans are featured in 4x6 black frames. The two flags still flank the entire tribute. The wall was finished and ready for public viewing Aug. 28, 2023.
McDonald and Swanson said they are grateful to the council, City Administrator Jason McPherson, and Linda Nichols who is site manager for the Nutrition Center, for allowing them the opportunity to create the Wall of Honor. Callaway-Smith-Cobb Funeral Home donated the framed flag, and Carter Smart Funeral Home donated the display case in which the flag is stored. Swanson also wanted to remind people that the Wall of Honor is more than just a wall of photographs, but also about the individuals in the images and the people who contributed.
“We owe our gratitude to all those providing the photographs to assemble the Wall of Honor, and last but not least, the men and women of our nation who were, and are willing to serve our country to keep us free,” Swanson said.
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