Norman Wayne Garrett, June 23, 1942 – February 15, 1965. Pvt. E-2, Army. Died from hostile artillery, rocket or mortar, South Vietnam.
Tony R. Arriaga, October 7, 1938 – May 6, 1966. Sgt. E-5, Army. Died gun, small arms fire, South Vietnam.
Mark Andrew Bateman, May 3, 1947 – October 3, 1967. Corporal, Army. Died from multiple fragmentation wounds, Dinh Tuong, South Vietnam.
Juan Manuel Garcia, December 27, 1948 – November 20, 1967. PFC, Army. Died from multiple fragmentation wounds, Kontum, South Vietnam.
Allen Wade Ingram, December 12, 1949 – September 24, 1968. Lance Corporal, Marine Corps. Died from gun small arms fire Quang Tri, South Vietnam.
Gary Everett Graves, April 10, 1948 – November 11, 1968. TM3 – E4, Navy. Died from other explosive device (river mine), Quang Tri, South Vietnam.
Arthur Martinez Garcia Jr. – April 15, 1947 – February 7, 1970. Sgt., Marine Corps. Died from gun small arms fire, Thua Thien, South Vietnam.
They were sons. Brothers. Uncles. Friends. Boys, really. They grew up playing in the streets of San Manuel, Oracle, Mammoth and Tiger. They were athletes, students, classmates.
And when their country called for their service, they didn’t hesitate. They left their homes and their families behind and were sent to the front lines in Vietnam.
This Monday, the United States celebrated Memorial Day. San Manuel, Oracle and Mammoth celebrated by honoring the Vietnam 7, dedicating a memorial in their name at the entrance to San Manuel. The dedication included a color guard and 21-gun salute. It included beautiful renditions of the National Anthem and America the Beautiful, performed by Julia Egginaman. The key note speaker was Command Sgt. Paul Belanger (retired), a 1969 graduate of San Manuel High School. Special recognition was given to the Gold Medal families in attendance. Also recognized were the veterans in attendance.
The memorial workers who volunteered their time, donated materials and worked hard to see this memorial project completed are:
Eddie Bonner – sheet metal fabrication, consultation and design
Ron Wood, First Class Construction and Remodeling, LLC – construction, consultation and design (520) 405-8962
Mike Dedrick and Phil Bonner – Assisted in sheet metal work
Frank Martinez – pole preparation and design
Deborah (Large) Foster and Connie (Sams) – Artists that painted the American and Arizona flags on the poles
Hoss Foster – flag template preparation
Billy Haro – pole preparation
Deanna Haro – wood treatment
Bill Haro – design, consultation and coordinator
Santiago Telles – medal consultant
Bruce McDade – hardware and metal
Richard and Mark Beal, North American Powder Coating and Sandblasting (520) 622-5640 – consultation design and powder coating
Steve and Brad Welch, Sherry Tilton, Graphic Design and Printing Monster Signs (520) 790-6400 – consultation, design and printing
Editor’s note: if you were unable to attend and wish to view the ceremony in its entirety, visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/copperarea to view a recording of the live event.