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Fallen sailors honored

May 16, 2004|By SCOTT BUTKI

The two local veterans killed on the USS Cole in October 2000 were honored Saturday with memorial signs erected by members of the Joint Veterans Council of Washington County while the veterans' parents watched.

The sign honoring Fireman Patrick Roy, U.S. Navy, was placed at the intersection of Main Street and Dogstreet Road in Keedysville.

The sign honoring Seaman Craig Wibberley, U.S. Navy, was placed at the corner of Salisbury and Conococheague streets in Williamsport.

"I am glad he is being remembered the way he is," Tom Wibberley said. "I think Craig would be glad all his friends will think of him when they see this while driving through Williamsport."

Wibberley's mother, Patty, and his sister, Toni, also attended the brief ceremony.

Williamsport Mayor John Slayman came over after the ceremony and spoke to the family members and veterans in attendance.

"This is wonderful," Slayman said of the sign.

Wibberley and Roy were two of 17 U.S. sailors killed in the Oct. 12, 2000, bombing of the USS Cole in the port of Aden in Yemen.

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Wibberley was buried at Lappans Crossroads, while Patrick Roy was buried in Antietam National Cemetery.

Roy's parents said they were pleased the sign was being put up.

"It is an honor for Patrick and the community," his mother, Kate Brown, said.

"It is nice. I am glad people remember Patrick," his father, Michael Roy, said. The sign will remind Patrick Roy's friends of who he was, Roy said.

It was appropriate to honor the two men Saturday since it was Armed Forces Day, said Bob Glausier, past president of the Joint Veterans Council, who spoke at a brief 9 a.m. ceremony in Keedysville and a 10 a.m. ceremony in Williamsport.

At both places, after the signs were erected, Glausier said the signs will cause future generations to wonder who Roy and Wibberley were and research their background.

For more than 15 years, the Joint Veterans Council of Washington County has been placing markers along Washington County roads to honor veterans killed in action in foreign wars. More than 300 memorial signs have been put up.

The two-sided black aluminum signs bear the white engraved names of veterans, dates of birth and death, military branches and ranks. The signs are fastened to street posts near where the veterans lived.

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