Eight veterans received warm, heavy, handmade quilts on Veterans Day from the Heartland Nebraska Chapter of the Quilts of Valor.

The quilts were displayed at the 20th Century Veterans Memorial in North Platte, with American flags flapping vividly in the cold northwest wind.

The quilts are made in three layers to provide comfort and show gratitude for the service, sacrifice and bravery of veterans.

Lincoln County Quilts presented their first quilts on Veterans Day 2019. The Chapter has presented 74 quilts since then. The group was recently recognized by the Lincoln, Nebraska Chapter as the most active in Nebraska.

The recipients : (click on the images to enlarge)

Eugene L. Hardy

Eugene Hardy

Gene served in the United States Army from May 1975 to December 1979. His basic training was conducted at Fort Leonardwood, MO. From there he was dispatched to Fort Polk, LA, where he trained with Special Forces, and the 181st Airborne in the jungle war, then served in Vietnam. Gene said he did what he was trained to do and spent an additional 180 days so he wouldn’t have to stand guard once he got home.

Gene was awarded a Specialist Sniper 4 Medal and Vietnam Service Ribbon.

One special thing to mention is that the person who appointed Gene to receive a QOV is now deceased. Terry Harlin named Gene to thank him for all the hard work and everything he did for him. Reconstructed quilt by Sandy Wyngaard, quilt by Chris Reinert and binding by Mitzi Mueller.

Mark Crow

Mark Crow

Mark served in the United States Army from November 1967 through November 1969. He joined the National Guard while in high school and completed basic training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, and was discharged after four years.

Mark did basic training at Fort Lewis Wa. and advanced training at Fort Huschuca, Az.

In May 1968, he went to Vietnam where he was stationed at Camp Enari in Pleiku with the 4th Infinity Division in a supply and transport unit. Drove a five-ton semi-truck to deliver supplies to forward shooting bases. Mark received an award for driving 25,000 miles without an accident.

Mark qualified for sniper with the M-1 and M-14 and expert with the M-16. He was awarded the National Defense Service Medal, the Veterans Service Medal with two stars and the Champion’s Medal of the Republic of Vietnam.

The quilt made by the members of the Heartland Quilt Guild; quilting by Chris Reinert and binding by Mitzi Mueller.

John M. (Mike) Polk

John Mike Polk

Mike was in the United States Marines from December 1965 to November 1967. He attended the Marine Corps recruiting depot in San Diego for his basic training.

He served his country in Vietnam with 4th Logistics Command and participated in G-2 Intelligence.

Mike was a liaison at NAMO, a combined action company. He took orders, instructions and notes to the soldiers.

Quilt made by Maureen Childears and quilted by Susie Walker.

Douglas Dean Misegadis

Douglas Dean Misegadis

Doug served in the United States Army from May 1964 until May 10, 1966. His basic training was at Fort Leonardwood, MO. His assignments took him to Fort Benjamin Harrison, IN and Fort Bliss, TX where he served with the STRAC unit on a high readiness mission. He

then went to Nha Trang, Vietnam, assigned to the 22nd SDF. Doug received an Expert Rifleman Award, Good Conduct Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Presidential Unity Citation, and a personal and personal letter of commendation.

His quilt reconstituted by Julia Albrecht; quilting and binding by Sara Kenny

Russell estill

Russell estill

Russell served as a Reservist in the National Guard from August 1957 to February 1958. Russell then joined the Air Force National Guard Reservists from February 1, 1958 to October 27, 1961. The Air Force has called Russell on active duty for the Berlin Crisis and he served as Airman 1st Class Medic- Auxiliary Nurse from October 27, 1962 to August 31, 1963.

In October, Russell and his twin brother were called to serve. They were the only two from their unit to be called. Russell was honorably removed from his duties as an E1 Airman 1st Class. Russell is a true patriot; he LOVES his GOD and his COUNTRY.

Her quilt was pieced together by Sandy Wyngaard; quilting and binding by Chris Reinert

Roland pettit

Roland pettit

Roland enlisted on active duty in the Army in 1954. His basic training was at Fort Riley Kansas. He then underwent specialized training at Fort. Gordon for the teletype repair.

In 1954 he went to Fort. Devon’s, Massachusetts for cryptography training.

He was then stationed in France and served four years, then continued to serve as a reservist in the National Guard.

In 1965, he was then recalled to active service for the military and served until 1986.

Duty stations included Germany, Vietnam, France, the United States and the Secret Service. During his Vietnam service from 1970 to 1972, was with the 556th Mountain Men, he was injured during this time.

Roland was a sniper for the army and retired with the rank of master Sergeant.

Roland has received the Meritorious Service Medal three times; the bronze star; his service to the secret services; and a purple heart.

Her quilt was made by Vicki S.

Joseph grachek

Joseph grachek

Joe Grachek Jr. enlisted in the Air Force Aviation Cadet Training Program in April 1955 and received his Navigator Wings and Commission in July 1956.

His first posting was to SAC in the 310th BW as a KC-97 tanker navigator. He was then assigned to the 22nd BW as a KC-135 Navigator.

As a crew member, he flew numerous TDY refueling missions in Europe and later during the war in Southeast Asia. He was then assigned to Hastings RBS and deployed from there first to Korea as a bomb site commander and then as a bomb site commander in Thailand. His last posting was in Rapid City as head of the intelligence branch of the alternative SAC Looking Glass. He retired in 1975 with the rank of major.

He has received numerous medals the Air Medal with OLC and Meritorious Service.

The quilt was made by Chris Reinert.

Bernard Zelasney

Bernard Zelasney

Bernard volunteered for the draft at the age of 18 on January 30, 1943 and enlisted in the US Navy at Camp Farragut, Idaho in April 1943, where he received basic training. He was then assigned to the Armed Guard unit, which involved handling large guns on merchant ships. Its base was at Treasure Island in San Francisco.

After 3 months of training in San Diego, Bernard was assigned to a merchant navy ship and then to a personnel carrier. He served in the Pacific and participated in numerous invasions in the islands of New Guinea, Guam, Saipan and the Philippines. They typically traveled in convoys of 30 to 50 US Navy ships during invasions. He was demobilized in March 1946.

The quilt was made by Marilyn McGahan.

Anyone interested in nominating a veteran for a quilt can do so at www.qovf.org/nominations-awards

If you are interested in playing a role in the North Platte branch of the Quilts of Valor Foundation, contact Chris Reinert at [email protected] for volunteer opportunities.

The recipients

Photos by Georges Lauby. Tap the images to enlarge them.

© 2021 Le Bulletin de la Platte Nord. All rights reserved.


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