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MyReport: Veterans Share Their Stories of Service

(KNWA/FOX24)-- Veterans Day is Monday and while folks across the country honor the sacrifice of those who have served, we'd like to share just a few pictures and stories of our local veterans. Thank you for your service.

(KNWA/FOX24)-- Veterans Day is Monday and while folks across the country honor the sacrifice of those who have served, we'd like to share just a few pictures and stories of our local veterans.  Thank you for your service.

If you've got pictures and memories to share, send them to news@knwa.com.


"PFC Chris Walls is 20 years old now. He joined the Army Reserve when he was a junior in high school and attended Basic at Fort Leonad Wood, MO the summer Before his senior year. His dad and I begged, cried, screamed and even tried to bribe him into not joining. Of course, he had bigger dreams and better plans for who he wanted to be... And more bravery than most men ever show in their lives, all before he was even 18.

"He is now 'stationed' at Fort Chaffee, where he attends his drill every month. In his heart, he stands ready to defend his country when he is asked to do so.

"He graduated from Spiro High School last May. He spent seven years in their marching band, and now volunteers there when he is needed. He has been a dream to parent, and never a moment of trouble. His family and friends adore him, and his mom is his biggest fan!

"Aside from his deep love of his country, he is kind and compassionate. He has two sisters, one of which has Down's Syndrome who he loves and protects now, and did so even when he was just a child himself. He also has a younger brother who he makes time to play video games and cars with." --Dayna Cochran


"Our son Maddox wants to grow up to be a Marine just like his daddy:)" --Erica Jolee McGaugh


"Army picture of me in Honduras! Love my job working for the VA hospital."  --Jack F. Wilson Jr.


"My Grandpa. Sgt. Donald G. Curtiss 1930-1992. Veteran of the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Army, having served in the Korean War and the Vietnam War, and retiring as master sergeant. Worked for the U.S. government in Washington, D.C." --Stephanie A. Rayburn


"The first time my daughter got to see where her grandpa is. Heartbreaking, she never got to meet him. He was an amazing man from what I've been told. I only got to know him for 2 1/2 years out of 26 years of my life." --Carla Ballow-Cook


"Grandsons of Pat and Gary Dwyer of Bella Vista serving in the Kansas Army Reserve and U S Merchant Marine Academy."  -- Gary Dwyer


"This is my brother, Private Jacob Miller from Fayetteville, AR. He has just graduated Basic Training and is one of four (out of over 2100) to receive a sharp shooter award that received a pin as well. We couldn't be any more proud of him. He just started and he's earning pins most never could!"  --Nicole Miller


"75 collective years of military service. George Filbeck (left), Ray Filbeck (center) and my father, Charles Filbeck(right)." --Kathy White


"19 and "fresh" from Boot Camp, & on my way to 2 years of training followed by 4 years as a Nuclear Reactor Operator on the USS Nimitz." --Wade Espenschied


"I have a 25 year old son who joined the Army National Guard right out of high school. (he even had to put his scholarship on hold until he returned from Iraq and of course basic) I am so proud of my son, since he was the man of the house and the oldest of my three kids. After his father moved away he always felt it was his place to take care of me and his little sisters. He went to Iraq and came back and then left for college. He has made me very proud. Myself and my daughters have always looked up to him. He has been an amazing son and brother (besides an amazing grandson, cousin and nephew) My family is so proud of him. Now he has enlisted for another term (I think 7 more years) I really just love the man he has become because of the choices he has made. Thank you for allowing me to share my story (I will send the picture to the email above) My son with his new niece on left. My son dressing in his military garb." --Robin K. Weatherbee


"This picture was about 1984. I'm the redhead standing up. I was a cook on submarines. This submarine was the USS Benjamin Franklin SSBN-640. We were in the middle of the ocean somewhere and surfaced for a picnic. I served 12 years in the Navy. I loved being a cook, nothing better then having the wives upset with me because their men gained weight while at sea. Smiles." --Mike Connors, Pea Ridge



"My husband, Thomas Bonner, served on active duty in the United States Marine Corps between 2004 and 2009. He enlisted out of Fort Smith, AR as a combat engineer. Soon thereafter, he was sent to Okinawa, Japan. While in Japan he was selected to become a Marine Security Guard. These Marines provide armed security at U.S. Embassies and Consulates abroad. The three he served at were: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; Paris, France; and Sarajevo, Bosnia & Herzegovina. I have included two pictures of his time as an embassy Marine. The solo picture is Thomas serving at U.S. Embassy Paris and the group photo is Thomas’s detachment in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia with the only Marine to serve as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Peter Pace. Everyone in our family is EXTREMELY proud of his service."   --Shayla Bonner



"My grandfather, Joseph Northrop was stationed out of Alaska early 1940s while his wife (my grandmother) Marie Northrop was keeping morale up back home!" --Sherry Valentin
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