News From Terre Haute, Indiana


November 10, 2012

West Vigo Middle School dedicates Kesler Veterans Memorial Garden

Veterans Day is an ‘attitude,’ not a 24-hour-period, coordinator says

WEST TERRE HAUTE — West Vigo Middle School on Friday dedicated the Kesler Veterans Memorial Garden, which surrounds the school’s flag pole, along with a new U.S. flag.

It was part of the school’s Veterans Day program to honor all veterans, including John and Maxine Kesler, both deceased World War II veterans who annually attended the school’s program.

“They were so vital in this community in keeping patriotism alive. They were very visible in our school during Veteran’s Day and anytime we needed anything for our citizenship education, they were here to help,” Melanie Beaver, a seventh-grade language arts teacher who coordinated the program, said of the Keslers.

“It is important at our school that we show our students that Veterans Day is an attitude, not a 24-hour period, so that garden at the front of our school will show students that,” said Beaver, whose nephew, Army Pvt. Robert W. Murray Jr., was killed in 2005 while serving in Afghanistan.

Veterans Day is Sunday, with observance on Monday.

Technology and business students at the school designed and fabricated a plaque that will be placed at the base of the memorial.

A new flag was also presented to Brad Kesler, a son of John and Maxine Kesler. John Kesler, who died two years ago, was a sergeant in the U.S. Army, while Maxine, who died in August, was a nurse, with the rank of first lieutenant.

“We went to every Veterans Day event, parade and [the] Highland Lawn cemetery since I was a child,” Brad Kesler, 61, said before the program’s start. “It was important for both of them, being both veterans, to honor veterans.”

Brad recalled a Veterans Day when his mother, suffering from Alzheimer’s, went to an event where former Indiana Gov. Joe Kernan spoke. His mother started walking toward the governor.

“I asked her where she was going. She said she wanted to talk to him. I told her the governor doesn’t have time to talk to us. She gave me that look and said he will talk to me,” Brad said, as tears welled in his eyes.

“A security guard put out his hand and she just brushed it aside and walked right up to the governor. She said, ‘I am Maxine Kesler.’ He said, ‘Yes ma’am.’ She said, ‘You know there were women who fought in World War II, don’t you?’ ” Brad Kesler recalled.

“He said, ‘Yes I try to talk about them,’ ” Brad Kesler said. Maxine then said, ‘I listened to your entire speech and you never mentioned women one time.’ Gov. Kernan started to say something and then he looked at her and he said, ‘Ms. Kesler, I have 10 more stops to make today. I guarantee you I will mention women at every one,’ ” Kesler said.

Kesler said his mother “was very proud of the women who served today and there has been such movement up in the ranks for women. My mother was on an island in the Philippines with 9,000 soldiers and seven nurses,” Brad Kesler said. “She went through the Panama Canal and talked about all the big guns being alongside of it to protect it and saw Admiral Halsey’s fleet sail out of Pearl Harbor. She saw things we read about in history books.”

World War II changed their whole life, Brad Kesler said, as the GI bill allowed his father to go through school to become an attorney.

Maxine Kesler served in Manila in the Philippine Islands, where she treated U.S. soldiers and Japanese prisoners, and served at Biak Island. She was awarded the World War II Victory Medal, Asiatic Pacific Victory Medal, Philippine Independence Ribbon and Good Conduct Medal.

John Kesler also served in the U.S. Army in the South Pacific, receiving four Bronze Stars. He was commissioned as a Sagamore of the Wabash by former Gov. Kernan.

Alice Shorter, a seventh-grade science teacher at the middle school, spoke of how hard it is for mothers to send their children into war. Her son, Army Capt. Kyle C. Shorter, on military leave, attended the program in uniform.

“We mothers experience emotions and have a perspective different from soldiers who can try to only understand why we worry and cry so much,” she said. “Military parents often say that we did not volunteer, but we also serve. As any Army mom will say, it’s a whole different part of your heart when it is your child,” Shorter told students gathered for the program.

“Sending your son or daughter to war is one of the most difficult experiences a parent can have. You spend 18 years or more protecting your child. Then you are called upon them to be brave and courageous as you see them off to a place where mortal danger is a daily fact of life,” Shorter said.

Shorter said modern day communications make it easier to stay in touch with relatives, but the wait is often difficult between talks. “We talk about our soldiers. We live for the opportunity to talk with them and we wait for another chance to talk to them again,” she said.

“We cry when they haven’t called or written and we cry when they do. We cry because we are frightened for them and because we miss them. We cry when they leave, when they return and when they leave again,” she said. “There is nothing like a good cry to set your head straight. We moms say that our tears are our liquid love, straight from our hearts to our eyes,” Shorter said.

Reporter Howard Greninger can be reached at (812) 231-4204 or howard.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • MET073114griffin markers.jpg Trail blazers

    Blake Griffin remembers when he and his brother, Dale, would ride their bikes along wooded trails in the wilderness area of Fowler Park.

    July 31, 2014 7 Photos

  • Officials say city ‘overspent’

    Two Terre Haute councilmen told the Taxpayers Association of Vigo County Thursday they think the city is overspending, but they gave no solutions to reduce expenses.

    July 31, 2014

  • MET073114sinkhole korenski.jpg Block downtown to close for repairs

    A sinkhole is forcing the temporary closure of a major downtown street beginning Monday.

    July 31, 2014 2 Photos

  • MET 012312 MICK NEWPORT.jpg Wave of retirees at Vigo schools

    Valarie Bailey has worked for the Vigo County School Corp. for 26 years in roles that included at-risk counselor, school social worker, assistant student services director and curriculum coordinator.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fire house to fire dept.

    A legal battle has been resolved to restore ownership of the community fire station in Fayette Township.

    July 31, 2014

  • Road Closings

    14th Street, from Oak to Poplar streets, will be closed from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Aug. 9 for Friends and Family Weekend.

    July 31, 2014

  • August Fire Safety Tip

    Monthly safety hint — Barbeque/grilling safety

    July 31, 2014

  • MET 073014 WESTMINISTER DIG.jpg Expanding independence

    Westminster Village, a Terre Haute retirement community, is investing $1.8 million to construct 12 new villa homes, officials announced Wednesday.

    July 30, 2014 5 Photos

  • Decades later, dry cleaners leave blemish

    Fifty years ago, about 30 dry cleaners did business in the city of Terre Haute. City officials are now cleaning up the mess some left behind.

    July 30, 2014 1 Story

  • MARK BENNETT: Year of River sets example for state

    Terre Haute pays more attention to the Wabash River these days.

    July 30, 2014

  • Climate of less regulation, more chemical spills leaves ‘historical pollution,’ NCA director says

    Former dry cleaning sites are an environmental problem all over the state, according to the Indiana Department of Environmental Management.

    July 30, 2014 1 Story

  • MET073014parks bbushee.jpg Camping turnout low for first half of summer

    Camping revenue for the past two months has dropped in Vigo County parks, a downturn park officials say is difficult to attribute to a new park policy limiting campers’ stays to 14 days in the three county parks.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • MET 073014 DESTROYED.jpg Devastating fire takes out mobile home

    A Seelyville mobile home sustained heavy damage in a fire early Wednesday morning.
    Lost Creek Township firefighters were called to the scene in the 2200 block of Tabortown Road south of U.S. 40 at about 2 a.m.

    July 30, 2014 3 Photos

  • Man posts bond after fatal wreck

    An Oct. 7 trial date has been set for a Terre Haute man accused of driving while intoxicated causing death.

    July 30, 2014 3 Stories

  • Driver injured, airlifted, cited for failure to yield

    An elderly woman was injured in a crash Wednesday afternoon in Sullivan County, according to Indiana State Police.

    July 30, 2014

  • MET072914leo screen.jpg Slick’s debut

    Bobby “Slick” Leonard was the main attraction but his hometown, Terre Haute, was constantly in the background as friends, fans and family gathered in Indianapolis Tuesday night to honor the man famous for the words “Boom Baby.”

    July 29, 2014 8 Photos

  • MET 072914 TAJIMI YANASE.jpg Sister-city students get a dose of ‘new culture’

    One of Juri Sawada’s dreams has been to visit America.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • Motion delays trial for 2012 homicide

    A man who has been jailed about 20 months in connection with the homicide of his wife will not go on trial next week as scheduled.

    July 29, 2014

  • Sheriff charged in prostitution case

    Clark County Sheriff Danny Rodden has spent more than 30 years in law enforcement working to protect the public from criminals, but on Tuesday he was treated as one.

    July 29, 2014 1 Story

  • maple candy closeup.jpg Vigo Parks dishing out the sweetness

    Vigo County Parks and Recreation has made a “sweet” addition to its maple syrup production at Prairie Creek Park.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • Danny Rodden indicted on federal charges

    Instead of overseeing the operations of the Clark County jail and police force Tuesday, Clark County Sheriff Danny Rodden found himself being transported by the FBI to Indianapolis to answer federal charges.

    July 29, 2014 1 Story

  • Woman’s condition ‘fair’ after grocery store wreck

    A Terre Haute woman was listed in fair condition Tuesday at Eskenazi Health in Indianapolis as the result of injuries sustained in Monday’s accident on the Baesler’s Market parking lot.

    July 29, 2014

  • Semi driver cited for alcohol use

    A commercial vehicle driver has been placed out of service after he tested positive for alcohol consumption during a Tuesday morning traffic stop in Sullivan County.

    July 29, 2014

  • Church to give out school backpacks

    United Methodist Temple will stage its first-ever Back-2-School Bash from 5 to 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 9.
    The church is located at 5301 S. U.S. 41.

    July 29, 2014

  • MET 072814 BUS MEYERROSE.jpg Bus safety features

    New safety features on South Vermillion School Corp. buses have led to fewer disciplinary problems and fewer incidents of motorists illegally passing stopped school buses, officials say.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • Pendergast.jpg Humvee driver says foot caused fatal accident

    Kyle Pendergast, 22, the Terre Haute driver of a black Humvee charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing the death of a teenager, has told police he could not turn the wheel before the vehicle flipped in a field in an early Saturday morning accident.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo 2 Stories

  • MET 072814 CONTAMINATED Cleaner may have contaminated water

    Groundwater and soil testing is set to begin within a week to learn whether toxic chemicals might have seeped into the wells of a small southside neighborhood and even beyond.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • Housing Authority’s Warren Village nearing completion

    Construction on the newest Terre Haute Housing Authority property – Warren Village – should wrap up next month, a housing authority official said Monday.

    July 29, 2014

  • rush-hr.jpg Observers predict ‘wide open’ process of picking next chief

    State Supreme Court Chief Justice Brent Dickson surprised observers in June when he decided to step down after a brief tenure as the state’s top judge.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • Multi-vehicle accident in parking lot

    A woman was hospitalized with injuries after a multiple-vehicle accident late Monday morning in the Baesler’s Market parking lot on Poplar Street

    July 29, 2014

Latest News Poll
AP Video
Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Raw: Deadly Taiwan Gas Leak Explosion Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo 3 People Killed, Deputies Wounded in NC Shootout LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors Visitors Feel Part of the Pack at Wolf Preserve
NDN Video
Famous Internet Cats Help Big Cause With Viral Video Raw: Obama Gets Hug From Special Olympian Snoop Dogg Narrating Animal Footage Is Perfect Tigers Acquire David Price - @TheBuzzeronFOX Russell Brand Slams Sean Hannity Over Gaza Conflict Segment Chapter Two: Composing for a film in retirement Woman's Dive Goes Terribly Wrong Brian Williams Reports on Daughter Allison Williams' 'Peter Pan' Casting News Did Jimmy Fallon Look Up Heidi Klum's Dress? What Drama? Miranda Kerr Poses Topless Plane crashes in San Diego Costco parking lot Justin Bieber Takes To Instagram To Diss Orlando Bloom You Won't Believe the Celeb Cameos in "Sharknado 2" Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Orlando Bloom 'Takes a Swing' at Justin Bieber In Ibiza Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -


    March 12, 2010

Real Estate News