Lest We Forget, Rockingham
The memorial consists of a pylon-shaped granite base approximately four feet tall topped with a marble bust of a male soldier. The soldier is wearing a World War Two era garrison cap and the portion of the uniform present is a Class A style from the same period. To either side of the base are marble urns about one foot tall. Inscriptions appear on the front and rear. Above the front inscription is an incised wreath cradled by the words “Lest We Forget.” The bust head atop the monument is thought to be that of a World War Two soldier killed in action (see Subject Notes.)
Images: Rear view | Inscription
Front: LEST WE FORGET / WE SALUTE THOSE WHO HEED / THEIR NATION’S CALL TO PROTECT / AND DEFEND HER CONSTITUTION / AND LAWS. THESE PATRIOTS COME / NOT FROM THE HALLOWED HALLS / OF MILITARY TRADITION BUT FROM / AN ARRAY OF VARYING ORIGINS AND / RELIGIOUS AND ECONOMIC CULTURES. / WHEN AMERICA’S NEEDS ARE GREAT, / SHE ASKS HER FINEST TO ACCOMPLISH / THE TASKS THAT DETERMINE HER FATE. / HAVING PREVAILED, THESE PATRIOTS / RETURN TO THEIR FIELDS OF ENDEAVOR, / SELDOM RECEIVING GRATITUDE. THE / FALLEN ARE OFTEN FORGOTTEN, AND / THOSE WHO RETURN ARE FREQUENTLY / IGNORED. TODAY HOWEVER, WE / ACKNOWLEDGE ALL DEBTS OWED TO / THESE MEN AND WOMEN.
Rear, center: ERECTED BY / RICHMOND COUNTY / VETERANS COUNCIL / MAY 26, 1985
Rear, bottom left: INSCRIPTION WRITTEN BY / DEBRA LEE SMITH
Rear, bottom right: BUST DONATED BY / TIMMS MEMORIAL CO. INC.
May 26, 1985
34.937500 , -79.773890 View in Geobrowse
"Richmond County Bust Head Monument," The American Legion, legion.org, (accessed March 14, 2021) Link
National Park Service. "Richmond County Courthouse" in National Register of Historic Places, npgallery.nps.gov, (accessed March 31, 2021) Link
Richmond County Courthouse - Rockingham, NC.jpg. From Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository, (accessed March 31, 2021) Link
Richmond County Veterans Council
The story about the soldier bust was retold to the site's editors by Mr. Eric Evans, a former employee of Timms Memorial Company, who first heard it from the since deceased owner of the company. A photo had been provided to the company to create the bust and paid for by family members. No one then ever returned to pick it up and the company gave the bust to the Richmond County Veterans Council when their memorial was purchased. The bust had been carved when the company had been owned by Mr. Cagle. The bust was part of the inventory when Mr. Cagle sold the company and just sat in a box for many years. The bust was thought to have been carved in Georgia and said to be that of a Lumbee Indian from near Pembroke, NC.
Lettering and installation done by Eric Evans.
The memorial is located to the right of the entrance of the Richmond County Courthouse at 105 W Franklin St, Rockingham, NC 28379. The Richmond County Courthouse was designed by Charles Christian Hook and built in 1922–1923.
The memorial stands on the courthouse lawn.