Now, they belong to the ages.
Originally attributed to U.S. Secretary of War Edwin Stanton moments after the 1865 death of President Abraham Lincoln, that quote also applies to two fallen soldiers whose names have been added to the Bartholomew County Memorial for Veterans.
The names of Marine Cpl. John C. Bishop, 1984-2010, and Army Sgt. Jonathon M. Hunter, 1993-2017, will be revered and remembered along with others who died while in service to their country.
The etching work at the 25-column memorial on the Courthouse lawn was completed by Robin Holt of Holt Monument Works last week.
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When the Veterans Memorial was formally dedicated on Memorial Day 1997, it contained 171 names of Bartholomew County residents who had fallen while in military service since World War I.
The Bartholomew County Veterans Committee originally planned to stop adding names at the end of the 20th century. But as more families sought inclusion of lost loved ones, additions were approved that now brings the total number of names to nearly 190, committee chairman Zack Ellison said.
Born and raised in Columbus, the 23-year-old Hunter — who died Aug. 2 during a suicide bombing attack in southern Afghanistan — was well-known by many throughout the community before graduating from Columbus East High School in 2011.
While his mother, Kimberly Thompson, and stepfather, Brian Thompson, live in Brown County, the couple has long worked in the Columbus area. The soldier’s father, Mark Hunter, grew up and still resides on South Mapleton Street.
But in contrast, John Bishop’s ties to Bartholomew County were less recognizable when the 25-year-old Marine corporal was killed by a sniper in Afghanistan on Sept. 8, 2010.
Born in Batesville, the son of Eugene Bishop and Sarah Thomas had his family roots in the Versailles area. His published obituary stated Bishop attended South Ripley High School as a junior and graduated from Southwestern Shelby High School in 2003.
The Veterans Committee conducts research into each submission, with two main requirements for inclusion:
An established connection to Bartholomew County, such as birth place, school attendance or residency.
Their death must occur while they were in the military during a conflict authorized or underwritten by the U.S. Congress.
It was confirmed earlier this year, however, that Bishop actually graduated in 2003 from Columbus North High School while living with his mother, Ellison said.
Bishop had joined the Marines on a deferment plan, signing up between his junior and senior years of high school, and left for boot camp immediately after his graduation in Columbus.
When his flag-draped casket was flown from Dover Air Force Base in Delaware to Jennings County, the funeral procession didn’t come through Columbus.
Instead, the motorcade wound its way through the streets of North Vernon before his remains were laid to rest in Ripley County.
Ellison said that explains why committee members didn’t initially realize Bishop’s connection to Bartholomew County.
But however brief his local ties may have been, there was never any doubt regarding Bishop’s sacrifice, which included leaving behind a wife and two children, Ellison said.
The delay in adding Bishop’s name to the monument is not unprecedented.
The name of James Allen Baker wasn’t etched into the monument until 2015, almost 72 years after he was killed in action during World War II.
Complications arose when the 1930 Columbus High School graduate died without having children and most surviving descendants regarded him as a Californian.
It was largely the work of his nephew, Chuck Baker of Hope, that prompted the committee to add the name to the monument.
Who: John C. Bishop
What: Corporal in the United States Marine Corps
Age: 25; died Sept. 8, 2010 in Helmand Province, Afghanistan
High school: Columbus North, 2003 graduate; also attended Southwestern High School, Shelbyville; and South Ripley High School, Versailles
Family: Wife, Crystle; son, K-Sean; daughter, Ella; mother, Sarah Thomas; father, Eugene Bishop (deceased); brothers, William Bishop, Mike Bishop, Anthony Thomas, Eric Thomas, Jamey Bishop, Tyson Bishop; sisters, Nancy Braley, Amy Parker.
Who: Jonathon M. Hunter
What: Sergeant in the U.S. Army
Age: Born Oct. 10, 1993; died Aug. 2, 2017 at age 23.
School: 2011 graduate of Columbus East High School. Played both running back and defensive end for the East football team.
Military service: Joined Army April 8, 2014; served with 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division stationed in Ft. Bragg, North Carolina
Family: Wife, Whitney Michelle Hunter; father, Mark Hunter; mother, Kimberly Thompson; stepfather, Brian Thompson; brother, Marcus Hunter; sisters Lindsey England, Kelsey Thompson; brother-in-law, Andy England; niece, Bailey England; nephew, Jordan Burton.