EATON — In honor of his WWII veteran father and other service members in his family, Pete Farquhar recently painted a memorial on the side of his barn in Eaton.
On U.S. 127 there now stands a beige barn with a green roof sporting a newly-painted American Flag and five military emblems. Each emblem represents a member of Farquhar’s family who has served or is currently serving.
The mural was painted in celebration of Veterans Day, on Monday, Nov. 11. Farquhar explained, they removed a large hedge from that side of the barn and his nephew suggested painting an American Flag instead. They then decided to add a service medallion for every member of the family who ever served. There are five medallions on the barn — three at top representing Navy and two at the bottom representing the Army.
The servicemen represented include:
•Paul Farquhar who enlisted in the Navy and eventually served in the Marine Corps as well. He enlisted in 1942 at the age of 17. In his military career he served during WWII in the South Pacific, Guadalcanal, and Iwo Jima as a medic. He also during during the Korean Conflict.
The eldest Farquhar lied about his age to enlist in the Navy when he did. When he was in the Navy, he got into the medical corps wanting to be a dentist. However, when WWII began, he was drafted into the Marine Corps as a medic. He did his tour in the South Pacific, where he spent most of his time in Guadalcanal.
When he came back from WWII, he went home to Mansfield and met his wife (Pete Farquhar’s mother). He went back to service in the Korean Conflict. After several years of service, he was in the position to retire and came back home. There he opened a business, which he eventually sold to become a businessman in Dayton. He retired, bought the farm in Eaton, and spent half his time in Preble County.
•Bill Clement who enlisted in the Navy and served in Vietnam. He did two tours on the USS Newell.
•Joel Farquhar who enlisted in the Navy in 1955. He served on the USS Cape St. George, which is a guided missile cruiser. He did a five year tour as Master Helmsman.
•Dusty Clement — the nephew who suggested the painting in the first place — who enlisted in the Army in 2013. He served as a combat engineer and sergeant in Afghanistan and South Korea.
•Derek Clement who enlisted in the Army in 2004 and is still active duty. He served as a Green Beret and Special Forces.
The barn the mural is painted on originally belonged to Paul Farquhar, who passed away in 2014. His son added, the painting was envisioned as a way to honor his father’s memory. As a family, they recognize the importance in honoring veterans, and hoped this mural would be a way to thank veterans for their service in a permanent way.
“Traditionally, when it gets to be Veterans Day, myself and other people in our family called around to those who have served to thank them. We thought this would be a nice way to make it more permanent and to show them we are really serious about this. Hopefully, every time they pull into the farm they’ll feel good when they see [the painted American Flag and service emblems],” Farquhar said.
“I think it is important [to honor veterans] because I look at myself as the first generation removed from what I consider to be the greatest generation. If we don’t make a statement and continue to think about the men and women who sacrificed, I think it is something we never want to lose sight of. If people don’t realize what they went through, they’re losing something of their heritage.”
Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH