The Veteran’s Day Dinner and Awards Ceremony is going forward this year and the Dinner will be held, as usual, at the Hominy High School just inside the front doors of the school on November 11th at 11:30 AM. The Veteran of the Year Blanket Ceremony will be held in the HS gym starting at 1:00 PM. This year’s recipient of the “Veteran of the Year Blanket” and the honors that accompany this award is a veteran that has served The United States of America with pride. This veteran has served our country around the world from Lackland, Texas for basic training to Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines. This Veteran has served overseas for ten years in countries like New Found land, Okinawa, Germany, Thailand, and temporary duty stations to include Korea, Japan, Vietnam, and North Africa. He has been awarded seven medals and several of them multiple times. This year’s Veteran of the Year is a Senior Master Sergeant, ret. from the United States Air Force, Don Rainwater.
All Post 142 Legion Members and their spouses are welcome to attend.
This is going to be a “Flashback” series about veterans who have been part of the history of the HUT, Post 142 in Hominy, Oklahoma, and part of the history of the Hominy community. All veterans are special patriots and deserve to be honored, but the veterans who are no longer with us also deserve to be honored, and that is the purpose of this “Flashback” series for veterans that have passed into the Hominy Post 142 Post Everlasting Memorial in our hearts
John Alvin Fields
John was born Sept. 5, 1923, in Gillette, Wyoming. He was the son of John Henry and Lillian Pearl (Sanburn) Fields.
He moved with his family to the Middle Enterprise Area west of Hominy. He attended school at Mound Valley, the Middle Enterprise School District and later graduated from Blackburn High School in 1943.
John worked as a ranch hand in the area following the completion of his education until he was drafted into the service of his country into the United States Navy during World War II. In 1944, John Fields attended boot camp at Fort Wallace, Texas. He completed radar operator school at Point Loma, California. Following that he traveled five days and nights cross-country by train from California to the East Coast. John Fields was never land-based during his active duty. He served aboard the U.S.S. Wyffels DE-6 as well as the U.S.S. Jenks DE-665. John served honorably until his discharge in 1946 at Jacksonville, Florida.
Last week, I wrote about our monthly dinner meeting that took place on Thursday, October 21st and was an installation of officers meeting. Prior to the dinner meeting, we held our first Sons of the American Legion (SAL) meeting in over a year. It went fairly well. The dinner was wonderful with barbequed pork, beef, and chicken. The members provided multiple, delicious sides and desserts. After dinner the installation meeting followed with the swearing in of the previous elected officers. A great time was had by all.
I’m sure that you have all heard the phase, “When it rains, it pours.” Of course, we have breakfast at the Hut every Monday morning for all our Hominy Veterans, lovingly prepared by our faithful cook and 3rd Vice Commander Jimmy Himes. Even though, according to our guidelines, we don’t have breakfast on a holiday, we all forgot last Monday for Columbus Day and Indigenous Peoples’ Day, and Jimmy prepared the breakfast and we all showed up to enjoy the food.
Then on the Wednesday, October 13th, it was the United States Navy’s Birthday as claimed by the US Navy as the date of its official establishment, when the Second Continental Congress passed a resolution creating the Continental Navy. All of the guys at Post 142 like to kid me about being in the Navy, and a Sailor. They have even given me the nickname of “Squid.” These guys are absolutely my friends and buddies. I know that some people might be offended by this, but I consider it a term of endearment and acceptance as their friend. As it has been termed by many others, we are a “Band of Brothers”, and we respect one another and have each other’s back. As it has been termed, “No one left behind.”
On Tuesday, October 14th, Lynn and I met with the other members of the Hominy Heritage Association at the Hominy Library at noon. There were a lot of interesting things discussed including, but not limited to the receipt of the CenterPoint Energy Grant for the Hominy Depot Village as described in the Hominy News-Progress newspaper in the September 15th issue on page two, and an extremely successful “Legacies and Wine Evening at the Park”. Every chair was filled, and a good time was had by all. They also discussed having the Hominy Halloween walk up and down Main Street by the Hominy children scheduled for Saturday, October 30th starting at 6:00 PM. There is no current information on the day and time for the Hominy Christmas Parade yet.
The readers of these articles may remember the last thrill-packed episode of sailing the ocean blue when I finally caught up with my ship in Philadelphia and we finally left Philadelphia and steamed south to our new homeport in Norfolk, VA. We were not in Norfolk for very long before we set sail for Bermuda before heading south to Cuba. We moored in the bay of the capital city of Hamilton, Bermuda and we noticed all the houses had white roofs with funny ridges about six inches to a foot apart. It turned out that these roofs were designed this way to harvest the rainfall in Bermuda. The ridges or steps are designed to slow down the heavy rainfall helping the gutters collect the water and store it in tanks under the house. The roofs are still white because this reflects the ultraviolet light from the sun, which also helps to purify the water. In my first “Thrill packed episode” I mentioned the ride on a Greyhound bus from San Diego to Philadelphia, and that that ride had stories of its own. One of those stories involved meeting a very pretty girl that had boarded the bus in Cheyenne, Wyoming. We became friendly, but just enough to get her address so I could write to her after I reported aboard. We weren’t together on the bus very long before she had to leave. After a couple of letters exchanged, she told me that she was engaged to a Marine. That did it!