COMSTOCK—After more than four years in the making, a Veterans Memorial Wall now proudly stands at the corner of Custer and Main Street in Comstock, Nebraska. Flag-waving community members and visitors witnessed the dedication of the memorial wall during the annual 4th of July celebration in Comstock.
Sons of the American Legion (SAL) Squadron 220 Commander, Casey Doggett told KCNI/KBBN the wall is designed to honor all veterans who were honorably discharged from the United States Military.
The two ten-by-six-foot walls are able to display 400 bricks (Click here for July 2021 story by Lisa Fischer) with the veteran’s military credentials. Currently, more than 230 bricks have been sold honoring local veterans as well as those from all over the United States.
The 4th of July dedication included special recognition of all the individuals, organizations, and businesses who contributed to the memorial wall.
“It’s just been a huge involvement with everybody. It’s just been a tremendous effort by everybody and everyone has done their part to have this happen,” Doggett said.
The idea originally came from a group of people cleaning rifles in the community building in preparation for Memorial Day services. Doggett noticed the flag boxes but thought Comstock could build a veterans memorial wall similar to those found in nearby communities.
The entire SAL squadron jumped on board with the idea and was gifted with the generous donations and efforts from the Alabama Hunters group. Thomas McGilberry, originally from Comstock, returns to central Nebraska each year to hunt and fish. The organization donated four rifles throughout the years to be raffled off with the proceeds going toward the memorial wall project. Doggett referred to McGilberry, a 30+ year Army veteran and shooting education instructor, and the Alabama Hunters members as the backbone of the project.
As for hosting the memorial wall dedication on Independence Day, Doggett said it seemed like the perfect day to honor veterans.
“This is our nation’s 246 birthday, I believe, as a free country and this is where our celebration is always held on the 4th and we thought that would be the perfect time to dedicate this,” Doggett said.
Comstock hosts its annual Independence Day festivities including a parade, BBQ, kids activities, ballgames, and fireworks.
“In the little tiny town of Comstock, the population quadruples! It if you read the sign as your turn off 183 it says ‘a little town with a big heart!’ and they truly do, it’s definitely a fact. That little town is amazing what it turns into on the 4th of July,” Doggett added.
Doggett credited Butch Beaumont with his help designing and building the wall as well as several other businesses and donors.
Anyone interested in learning more about the Comstock Veterans Memorial Wall is encouraged to contact Sons of the American Legion or Casey Doggett at 308-870-3312.
All photos courtesy of Kourtney Ogle, taken during the July 4 celebration in Comstock.