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Some names left off veterans monument

August 11, 2009|By MARLO BARNHART

FUNKSTOWN -- Proud of his military service in the Vietnam War, Bill Osborne also has fond memories of his years living in Funkstown.

So at Monday night's Funkstown town meeting, he wondered aloud why his name and the names of more than a dozen other veterans of the Korea and Vietnam wars aren't on the plaque at the town monument.

"I represent 15 veterans who grew up in Funkstown and deserve to be on that plaque," Osborne said.

Six Korean War veterans and nine who served in Vietnam are eligible for inclusion, he said.

Vice Mayor Paul N. Crampton Jr. told Osborne that the town's 2008 refurbishing of the plaque was limited.

"We only took names from the old plaque and put them on the new plaque," he said.

That was done because the old plaque had deteriorated and needed to be replaced.

Councilman Richard Nigh said that he was instructed only to replace the old plaque.

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Nigh raised $3,300 from the veterans of Washington County for the new plaque, which was unveiled on Memorial Day 2008 at the intersection of Baltimore Street and Edgewood Drive.

"We need to get those names put on," Crampton said. "But I don't want to obligate the town to keep refurbishing that plaque."

Osborne said he wasn't at the meeting to place blame, only to right a wrong.

"Not to be recognized by your own hometown is a slap in the face," he said. "We want justice."

Osborne said a new plaque would be the blessing he is seeking.

"It was an accidental omission, not an injustice," said Councilman Jerry Walker.

Crampton said the criteria for inclusion on a new plaque should be residence in Funkstown at one time and proof of an honorable discharge from the military.

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