PINE CREEK — Pine Creek residents honored those who served in the armed forces during their annual Pine Creek reunion held Sunday, September 2, with a veterans memorial dedication.
A large memorial sign with names of those serving in the armed forces from 1941 to 1972 was erected near the Pine Creek Freewill Baptist Church.
Also honored were nine Adkins brothers who have served their country since 1941. On December 15, 2011, U.S. Congressman Nick Rahall asked the U.S. Congress and the U.S. Department of Defense, to recognize the Adkins brothers, who with their combined years of service totaling 104 years, for their patriotic dedication.
His request read, in part, “in southern West Virginia ‘family’ has a very special and sacred meaning. Its definition goes far beyond the traditional; more than a group of individuals related by blood or marriage. It is an Ideal that transcends all West Virginians; an institu-tion protected, trusted and revered by all. It is the core thread woven into and throughout the fabric of the values we treasure most.
“Today, I rise to honor a family of West Vir¬ginians from the Logan County community of Pine Creek, in the coalfields of southern West Virginia. They are nine brothers, nine of the 11 sons of the late Olive and Oscar Adkins, who collectively served in our Nation’s military for more than 104 years. This is truly a “band of brothers” for which our Nation owes a debt of gratitude…
“Fate was kind to the nine Adkins brothers. None were seriously injured, and all returned home safely, although many who served with them were not so lucky. All the Adkins brothers were honorably discharged, and, all were proud to serve their country. The pride in this remarkable record of military service is shared by their parents, two other brothers, Hobart and Robert, and four sisters, Madeline, Ruth, Lyndell, and Iris.
“The nine who served include Harvey, who was in the U.S. Amy during World War II 1943 to 1946; Jason, who was in the U.S. Army at the end of World War II to 1945 and
1946, then again from 1952 to 1955 during the Korean Conflict; Leon, who served In the Air Force from 1948 to 1952 in the Korean Conflict; Billy, who served in both the Army and Air Force from 1948 to 1954; Lowell, who served in the U.S. Air Force from 1954 to 1974 in both Thailand and Vietnam; Franklin, who served in both U.S. Air Force and Army from 1956 to 1976; Vernon, who joined the Army and served from 1958 to 1979; Linden, who served in the Army from 1965 to 1967; and Clifton, who served in the Army from 1959 to 1981.
“Selfless service and sacrifice are the twin pillars supporting our Republic. Surely, these values, so important to the future vigor of our democratic principles, were instilled in the Adkins Brothers by devoted and dedicated parents. Such a record of service is not happenstance or coincidence, rather, it is a record built with an abiding faith in the Almighty’s continued blessings on this land of liberty.
“Mr. Speaker, in sum, the Adkins brothers share 104 years of U.S. military service, a milestone record of service, that I hope the U.S. Department of Defense will soon formally recognize. I ask my colleagues to join me in acknowledging my fellow West Virginians as true American patriots and to thank them for their distinguished service to our great Nation.”
Along with the unveiling of the Pine Creek Veterans Memorial, several signs were displayed which have hung on several area bridges or a stretch of local highway renamed in memory of a veteran.
Those signs were for:
— Gordon Sorrell, a bridge located in Pine Creek is named in his honor. Mr. Sorrell was shot down over Germany and was a prisoner of War and forced to work on a work farm for the Germans until the war ended.
— Ervin Arnold, a bridge located in Pine Creek is named in honor of Mr. Arnold. Mr. Arnold was killed in action during the Korean War.
— Adkins Brothers Memorial Road. Nine of the Adkins brothers served in the military. They served in WWII, Korean and the Vietnam War. These brothers were recognized by the United States Congress and the Department of Defense. They did not know what kind of an award to give them, they had never heard of so many from one family serving in the military. Together they served 104 years. Also, they were recognized by the West Virginia Legislature. It has been said that they have set a record.
— Dale Shaheen, the bridge in Omar just in front of where the old Shaheen Shopping Center is located is named in honor of Mr. Shaheen; he was a former B-25 pilot.
— Reverend Glenn White, the bridge in front of the hospital in Logan is named in honor of Reverend White. He was a tail gunner on a 13-24 and was shot down over Austria. Patriots helped him get across the Alps after three months of evading German soldiers.
Those listed on the memorial include: Harvey Adkins, Jason Adkins, Leon Adkins, Linden Adkins, Billy Adkins, Roscoe Adkins, Franklin Adkins, Vernon Adkins, Clifton Adkins, Burl Adkins, Virgil Adkins, Burl Lee Adkins, Ronnie Adkins, James Adkins, Buddy Adkins, Ernest Arnold, Ervin Arnold (*Korean), Leslie Blevins, Virgil Blevins, Bob Blevins, Bill Blevins, Johnny Blevins, Mack Blevins, Bub Blevins, Paul Balentine, Dale Balentine, Rush Balentine, Earl Balentine, Mark Bailey, Troy Browning, John Billips, Willie Billups and Bob Burks.
Lawrence Colliver, Paul Colliver, Buddy Colliver, Bucky Chafin, Francis Chafin, Chester Chafin, Bill Chafin, Dewey Crum, Otis Crum, Memphis Crum, Willis Crum, Walter Crum, George Crum, Bob Cook, Elvin Cook, James Castle, Oral Castle, Gary Castle, Raymond Curry, Matthew Curry, Arnold Campbell, Johnny Campbell, Joseph Campbell, Otis Corbet, Roy Chaney, Willie Clancey, Leon Chaney, Johnny Clark, Dick Clark, Bobby Coleman, Jerry Cook, Estil DeHart, Walther Daugherty, Franklin Daugherty, Alec Disco (*WWII), Steve Disco, Stewart Estep, Whitey Estep, Frank Finley, Mike Finley, Pat Finley, Robert Farmer, Roosevelt Farmer, Richard Gilliam, Jennings Gilpin, Ivenson Gary, Manuel Gary and Carl Grubb.
Curley Hager, Abby Hager, Everette Hager, Gordon Hager, Gordon Hager Jr., Okey Hapney, George Hapney, Eddie Hatfield, Raymond Hatfield Jr., Louis Hernandez Jr., John Henry Harriston, Austin Harriston, Sherman Harriston, Julius Hubbert, Ronald Hurst, Willard Hurst, James Hale, Gene Jordan, Albert Jordan, Henry Jordan, Eddie Jordan, Earl Jackson (*WWII), Chester Jackson and Don Jackson.
Lloyd Jarrell, Edward Jarrell, Jimmy Johnson, Donald Johnson, Bruce Johnson, Starling Johnson, Johnny Jackson, Thomas Jackson, Caleb Jackson, Johnny Jarrell, James Jones, Lawrence Kelly, Walter Layne, Lonnie Layne, Jerry Layne, James Lackey, Dennis Lackey, Wendell Lackey, Samuel Lackey, Thurl Meadows, Joe Maynard, Douglas Maynard, Bernice Maynard Sr., Don Maynard, Paul Maynard, Johnny Maynard (*Vietnam), Willie Maynard, Randall Maynard, Clyde Maynard, Doug Maynard, Bobby Maynard, Richard Mayo, Frank Mayo and Bill Myers.
Clyde McDonald, Carl McDonald, James McDonald, Elzie Mundy Jr., Ronald Mundy, Larry Mundy, Dana Mundy, Danny Mundy, Everette Mays, Wetzel Nelson, James Neace, Donald Nichols, Ervin Nichols, Daniel Neace, Melvin Neace, Bill Neace, Jack Napier, Charlie Tolliver (*WWII), Tommy Price, Harold Price, Lee Queen, Johnny Queen, Pat Riffe, Neal Riffe (*Korean), Keith Rebar and Mickey Rebar.
Wayne Rasnik, Phillip Rasnik, Hyland Robinson (*WWII)), Jack Robinson, Clarence Rollins, Ed Richardson, Roger Shelton, James Simmons, Clarence Simmons, Lewis Simmons, George Sharp, Elwood Sexton, Ballard Smith, Bobby Shell, Sherwood Sorrell, Gordon Sorrell, Donald Sorrell, Sambo Shadd, Brady Shadd, Ainse Shadd (*WWII), Toby Joe Slade, Odell Slade, M.J. Stewart, Tommy Stewart, Billy Sheppard, Chuck Thern (*WWII), Jim Thern, Johnny Thern, Andy Thern, Isom Talip, Tommy Talip, Aubrey Turner, Jessie Turner, Frankie Thomas, Frank Wagoner, Jack York and Creed York.
An asterisk (*), denotes a resident who was killed in action and the conflict.