Military beat: Calendar salutes state's fallen
- Article by: MARK BRUNSWICK
- Star Tribune
- December 13, 2011 - 5:14 PM
The 2012 Minnesota Fallen Heroes Remembered calendars are now available. The calendars feature the narratives of Minnesota natives who died in Iraq and Afghanistan.
This is the third edition of the calendar, which was started by St. Paul resident Patricia Boyd, who after church often went to Fort Snelling to visit the grave of Tom Burnett, the Bloomington native who was one of those credited with fighting back on United Flight 93 on Sept. 11. She noticed the graves of newly fallen troops from Iraq and Afghanistan and began talking to family members who showed up, particularly the mothers, who shared the stories about their sons.
The idea ultimately turned into a calendar. Each month features a fallen Minnesotan, with pictures and a life story provided by family members. The 2010 edition sold more than 3,000 copies. The 2012 editions are on sale now for $10 through the Bryan McDonough Military Heroes Foundation at www.militaryheroesfoundation.org.
The money will go toward a $2 million pledge for the construction of the Fisher House at the Minneapolis Veterans Medical Center. Fisher houses provide housing for the families of members of the military recuperating from injuries.
When it was started, the Minnesota calendar project was the only one of its kind in the country, but others have popped up around the country.
For the first time, the Minnesota Department of Corrections' MinnCor program participated in helping print the calenders.
The 2012 calender features pictures and narratives of Army Spec. James Wertish, USMC Sgt. Bryan Opskar, Army Spec. Qixing Lee, USMC Pfc Moises Langhorst, Army chaplain Maj. Timothy Vakoc, Army Sgt. Ben Miller, Army Spec. Daniel Drevnick, Army Staff Sgt. Andrew Nelson, Army Staff Sgt. Todd Selge, Army Chief Warrant Officer 4 Matt Lourey, Army Staff Sgt. Dale Panchot and Army Sgt. Jesse Lhotka.
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