New plaques honoring service in Vietnam, Korea to be dedicated on Veterans Day

This Veterans Day, two new plaques listing the names of men and women who lived in Marblehead and served in the military during the Korean and Vietnam Wars will be dedicated at the VFW at 321 West Shore Drive.

It’s a personal project undertaken by local vet Jim Caswell and funded by the group Forever Marbleheaders.

Veteran Jim Caswell stands by plaques honoring local vets at the Marblehead VFW PHOTO: Leigh Blander

“They’re really remarkable,” Caswell told Marblehead News, referring to the plaques.

Caswell noticed that while the VFW has a memorial to the 1,400 Marblehead residents who served in World War II, there was nothing honoring vets who served during Vietnam and Korea. So he worked with Marblehead Veterans Agent Dave Rodgers to get a list of every resident who was enlisted during those two conflicts. 

There are 408 names on the Vietnam plaque and 379 on the Korea plaque. There are asterisks next to the names of people killed in action — nine in Vietnam and four in Korea.

“I definitely recognize a lot of these names,” said Caswell, who served in the Coast Guard from 1968 to 1974 and spent time in Vietnam. 

The plaques are made of stainless steel and have etched black lettering. They are 4 feet tall by 2 feet wide and hang on either side of the World War II memorial.

Caswell is a member of Forever Marbleheaders, which donated the $750 to make the plaques. (Read about Forever Marbleheaders HERE.)

Veterans Day activities

Marblehead Veterans Day activities kick off Wednesday, Nov. 9, at 9 a.m., with a Veterans Breakfast at the Council on Aging at the Judy & Gene Jacobi Community Center. The breakfast is sponsored by the Marblehead Masons.

Then on Friday, Nov. 11, at 10 a.m., the town will host its official Veterans Day service at the Abbot Hall auditorium. Doors open at 9 a.m. A shuttle bus will run from National Grand Bank up to Abbot Hall Friday morning from 9 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. It will return people to the bank after the ceremony.

 “Everybody’s invited,” said Rodgers. “We’ll have the Marblehead High School choral group singing. They’re always excellent.”

Navy veteran and VFW member Tim Kenney will speak at the ceremony.

“After the service, we always have coffee and donuts at the VFW,” Rodgers said. That is where dedication of the new plaques will happen.”

Also, Congressman Seth Moulton is holding a Veterans Town Hall on Friday, Nov. 11, noon to 1 p.m., at Abbot Hall. Guest speakers include Master Sgt. Homelyn Augustin, veteran employment representative at the North Shore Career Center; Capt. Rich Barbatao with the Department of Veterans Affairs; and Lt. Commander Robert Dunne, commander at the Peabody Veterans Council.

+ posts

Leigh Blander is an experienced TV, radio and print journalist who has written hundreds of stories for local newspapers, including the Marblehead Reporter. She also works as a PR specialist.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: