The veterans memorial plaque honors fallen Gaels who served their country.Two names added to veterans memorial plaque

On a cold November evening, more than 60 members of the Saint Mary’s family gathered to add two new names of fallen Gaels to the 39 listed on the Saint Mary’s veterans memorial plaque.

At the ceremony, Alumni Association President David Johnson ’84 introduced John Hanson, brother of Stephen Paul Hanson ’61, who was killed in Vietnam and was listed as missing in action for decades. DNA tests recently confirmed that he died in that war.

“We remember his memory. It never goes away,” John Hanson said in an emotional voice. “He is with us today, if only in spirit.”

Alisa Martin ’02, representing the family of Timothy P. Martin ’04, who was killed in Iraq, urged those assembled to remember her brother not only as a son, a brother and scholar, but as a hero.

Father Tom McElligott then blessed the plaque, sprinkling holy water over the names engraved on it, and Russell Harrison MBA ’79, chairman of the Board of Trustees read the names of all known fallen Gaels from World War I, World War II, Vietnam and Iraq.

A number of local and regional dignitaries attended, including State Assembly member Joan Buchanan, who described the two new veterans homes approved for Redding and Fresno.

Also present were SMC senior and veteran Shomari Carter, and Iraq War veterans Tom Dale ’12 and Vinnie Townsend ’12.

Tim Farley, Director of Community and Government Relations