Museum to host Veterans Day service
GRAVETTE — Members of the Gravette historical museum commission are planning a Veterans Day service Sunday, Nov. 11, to commemorate the 100th year observance of the armistice at the end of World War I. The armistice was signed at 11 a.m. Nov. 11, 1918.
The service is also designed to honor the memory of Captain Field E. Kindley, a Benton County boy who grew up in his uncle A.E. Kindley’s home in Gravette and attended Gravette schools. Kindley was the fourth-ranking air ace in World War I and was called the “Aerial Knight of the Ozarks.” While flying a Sopwith Camel biplane in World War I, he downed 12 German aircraft between June 26, 2018, and Oct. 28, 2018.
Kindley died in a tragic crash Feb. 1, 1920, during a training exercise at Kelly Field in San Antonio, Texas. His body was returned to Gravette for his funeral, the most elaborate ever seen in Gravette. Funeral services began on the lawn of the Kindley home (now the Gravette historical museum) and a long procession of family, military honor guardsmen, townspeople and school children walked from there to Hillcrest Cemetery. Kindley is buried in the family plot there.
Services will begin at 2:30 p.m. at Hillcrest Cemetery. Members of the John E. Tracy American Legion Post will participate and lower the flag to half-staff. State senator Col. Jim Hendren, of Sulphur Springs, will be the speaker. Hendren is an Air Force veteran and an active member of the Missouri Air National Guard.
A group of men, headed by Sgt. 1st class Bobby Martin, will attend from the Siloam Springs armory. These men are members of Bravo Battery, 2nd battalion, of the 142nd field artillery, the same battalion which marched at Kindley’s funeral, and will serve as the honor guard. A member of the Gravette High School band will play “Taps.”
An open house and reception will be held following the service at the museum, 503 Charlotte Street S.E. Refreshments will be served.