Tuba City veterans want proper recognition, respect
TUBA CITY, Ariz. - With the upcoming Fourth of July holiday, several veterans would like the public to remember the veterans that fought in past wars.
Gibson Jones, a Vietnam War veteran, has made a mission of getting the U.S. flag more recognized as a national symbol by holding flagpole ceremonies for veterans throughout the reservation. Recently in Luepp, a flagpole was dedicated in honor of a War World II veteran.
Jones also participates in memorials for veterans throughout the reservation and presents flags to the survivor's wife or relatives. He says that many veterans had problems when they came back from Vietnam and succumbed to alcoholism, which caused many veteran deaths.
Jones wants to get the public to recognize the flag as a sacred symbol and would like to educate the public about the proper way of handling the flag. He stated that he sometimes sees the flag being flown upside down - used traditionally as a signal of distress - which is very upsetting to him.
Jones wants to make sure everyone is aware of the importance of the flag and to treat the flag with respect.
Richard George is a veteran of the Korean War and is the current commander for the Korean Veterans of the Navajo Nation. He remains active in keeping the Korean War veterans recognized.
On June 13-14 he went to Las Vegas, Nev. to participate in a Korean War 60th anniversary commemoration. The event was entitled the 2010 Appreciation Event in Honor of American Veterans of the Korean War. This event is sponsored by numerous organizations to commemorate the Americans that served in the Korean War.
Veterans were able to attend appreciation dinners, concerts, dancing, symposiums and prayer sessions in honor of American Veterans of Korean War. The country of Korea is very grateful to the Americans that served to keep their country free from communism. Veterans from across the country were invited to attend.
George enlisted when he was 16. His brother served in WWII in the South Pacific so he decided to enlist in the Army from the Red Valley area. He was stationed in Seoul as part of the 7th Division, then moved to Japan at Okada Island. When the war broke out, he was sent to Korea.
After being discharged he came back to the U.S., unsure of whether to re-enlist. After being encouraged to re-enlist, he was stationed in Germany.
When he was younger, George questioned what he was fighting for. Later, he realized he was fighting for the freedom of Korea from communism. He says he would like to go back someday. He says that he was proud to have served.
Pete Clauschee, a fellow veteran from Tsaile, served from 1950-1956 and enlisted when he was 17. He stated that he rode a ship for about a week and was surprised to see people shooting at him when he landed. He says he could see them with their rifles running and walking around when he landed.
Clauschee was injured and had to spend a year at Merritt Island Naval Hospital before being discharged in 1956 with a Purple Heart from Oceanside, Calif.
These veterans - along with many others - want people to remember those that served for their country during the Fourth of July weekend and respect the flag as our national symbol.
Korean Veterans meetings are held every second Tuesday at the Tuba City Chapter House. For more information, call