Elizabeth Twp. honors vets Plaques added to memorial wall November 11

By on November 6, 2013

By: MELISSA HUNNEFIELD
Record Express Staff, Staff Writer

 

In late September, it was announced that the second phase of improvements to the Elizabeth Township Veterans Memorial, located in the Elizabeth Township Park, had been completed.

Six bronze plaques were installed on the memorial wall to honor the United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard and Merchant Marines, and another remembers the Prisoners of War and those Missing in Action (POW-MIA).

Also added to the wall were four plaques honoring township residents who gave their lives in service to the country. Those servicemen are Corporal Earl H. Edwards, Seaman First Class Charles Zartman and Staff Sergeant Carl F. Boehler, who served during WWII, and Corporal Jay Dennis Webster, Jr. who served in Vietnam.

Rodney May, Elizabeth Township Supervisor, submitted brief biographies of the four servicemen listed above.

 

Earl H. Edwards

Technician Fifth Grade Earl H. Edwards, 25, son of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Edwards, Lititz, was killed in France Nov. 19, 1944. He had previously been reported missing in action.

Edwards entered the service April 4, 1942. He trained at Camp Chaffee, Ark., and Camp Cooke, Calif. He had been serving as a gunner with an armored division overseas since Feb. 1943.

 

Carl F. Boehler

Staff Sgt. Carl F. Boehler, 22, son of Earnest F. Boehler, Lititz, a flight chief in the Army Air Forces, was killed Nov. 27, 1945 when the aircraft on which he was a passenger crashed and exploded near Ansbach, Germany.

He enlisted Dec. 8, 1941, and went overseas on Dec. 29, 1942. He was first attached to a fighter squadron and later transferred to a bomber group. He entered the service while a student at Manheim Township High School.

 

Charles Zartman

Apprentice Seaman Charles Zartman, 18, son of Mr. and Mrs. Israel Zartman, near Brickerville, died April 14, 1945 from pneumonia at the U.S. Naval Hospital, Sampson, N.Y.

Seaman Zartman entered the service Jan 18, 1945, and was stationed at the Sampson Training Station when he became ill. He formerly was employed at the Brunzi Sons Silk Company, Ephrata.

 

Jay Dennis Webster, Jr.

Corporal Jay Dennis Webster, Jr. served in the U.S. Army – D Company, 4th Battalion, 31st Infantry, 196th Infantry Brigade.

During the fifth month of his deployment , on Aug. 17, 1969, he was killed in combat in Quang Tin Province, South Vietnam. He was 19 years old.

 

History of the memorial

Although the Memorial Wall has only been located in the park since 2011, the memorial itself has been a permanent fixture in the township since World War II.

The original WWII Roll of Honor was placed along Route 322 in Brickerville on March 26, 1944 to honor the men and women of Elizabeth Township serving in the armed forces. It was sponsored by the Baron Stiegel Lions Club.

There were 55 names on the original Honor Roll – 51 men and four women.

 

After WW II

In 1959, the honor roll was transferred onto what became the War Memorial Plaque. Along with the names, it read: In grateful memory to the men and women from this community, who served in the Armed Forces of the United States during any war and lasting tribute to those who gave their lives in the service of their country.

In the spring of 2011, the memorial plaque was moved from Route 322 to the new Elizabeth Township Park by the Vietnam Veterans Committee of Elizabeth Township.

The recent improvements to the memorial wall were made possible by donations from Lititz VFW Post 1463 and American Legion Post 56.

Elizabeth Township Vietnam Veterans Committee member Nevin May thanks the posts, the community and the Elizabeth Township board for their continued support in bringing honor to those who served.

More MEMORIAL, page A15