Marker dedicated

-- Contributed

The New Cumberland Garden Club dedicated the first Blue Star Memorial Marker in Hancock County on June 9 during a ceremony attended by approximately 60 people gathered at the gazebo on state Route 2 in New Cumberland. The colors were presented by the Tri-State Young Marines Club. George Hines, garden club president, welcomed guests and recognized two members for their help during the three-year process of bringing the memorial to New Cumberland. Hines thanked state Garden President Carolyn McCafferty and state Garden Club Executive Secretary Lea Ann Terrell of Moundsville for their guidance and encouragement. He also recognized Kenneth “Pat” Kessel as one of only two surviving members of the New Cumberland’s “Last Man’s Club.” McCafferty expressed her gratitude to the club for adding the 86th Blue Star Memorial Marker in the state. Milli Hines, local club secretary, read a brief history of the Blue Star Marker program, which places highway markers across the continental United States, Alaska and Hawaii in honor of all who have served in branches of the military. The program has been in existence since 1945 under the auspices of the National Council of Garden Clubs that first wanted to honor all those who served during World War II. After the marker was unveiled, it was dedicated by McCafferty, and a floral tribute was placed at its base by garden club members. The ceremony ended with a gun salute and the playing of taps. Light refreshments were served. John Edwards provided special music for the ceremony. With the new marker are New Cumberland Garden Club members, from left, Shelly Anderson, Maureen Vulgamore, George Hines, Milli Hines and Sara Hawkins.