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Up Co Mendez (2) Co Mendez (3)

The following appeared in Issue 85 (Summer - Fall 2001) of the 508th PIR Association Newsletter.

Arlington National Cemetery, September 26, 2001.
Full military honors dedicated to Colonel Mendez.

A solemn procession of mourners paid a final tribute to Colonel Louis G. Mendez.

His flag-draped coffin was drawn by horses on a caisson escorted by an Honor Guard from Fort Meyers in dress blues. A military band, honor guard platoon and rifle saluting squad accompanied our beloved Commander to his final resting place 

At the wake in Falls Church, Virginia men of the 508 PIR gathered with the Mendez family and 150 friends Tuesday evening.

Paul Hamblin (Co C) conducted a brief service with the gracious consent  and support of  Mrs. Jeannie Mendez.
   The assembly applauded his remarks.

Paul Hamblin traced the record of Colonel Mendez with the 508 Parachute Infantry Regiment. He emphasized that in 1998 at our Reunion in Nashville, Tennessee “the Association named Col. Mendez, ‘Our General’, as a measure of the love and respect we had for him. – a rank we all believed  was long overdue.”

Paul read a poem titled, “I’m Free”, which best expressed Col. Mendez’s words to his family, friends and to men of the 508.

Francis Lamoureux (Co G) fastened the 508 PIR Association Red-Devil insignia on the side of the casket. Each member of the 508 delegation saluted farewell to “Our General” in turn, did an about-face and retired .

Jeannie accepts the folded American Flag from the Guard of Honor at the conclusion of services.

At the head of the casket is the 508 PIR insignia placed there at the wake by Francis M. Lamoureux,,  Association Secretary.

Fittingly, our beloved Colonel Louis G. Mendez is buried in a plot surrounded by Generals.

Attending the funeral were: Edward & Elsa Garrity (G); Paul & Sylvia Hamblin ,(C); John & Mary Hodge, (Co G); Francis &  Hildegarde Lamoureux,  (G); William Lord II, & Joannie, Hq 3rd ;   Mrs .Skip McGrath, (G); Armondo Ortiz, Co C, Richard & LaRue Owen, Co H, James & Tessye Russell, (G), George & Shirley Stoeckert, (Hq 1st.)


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