Major Thomas D. Howie Memorial, Shelby
The prominent feature of the Howie memorial is a large, flat faced stone that has been tilted forward to hold the unadorned bronze plaque. A border of white landscape brick forms a circle around the stone and a red brick sidewalk wraps around this border with a walk leading to the street. A narrow band of landscaping holds two benches, plantings and mulch and is defined by a second band of white landscape brick that encompasses the circle feature and sidewalk.
Images: Entrance sign | Plaque | Rededication sign | Side view | Far-off view of the memorial
Plaque: A / LIVING / MEMORIAL / TO / MAJOR THOMAS DRY HOWIE / APRIL 12, 1908 – JULY 17, 1944 / ONE OF THE MOST GLORIOUS STORIES OF BRAVERY / BEYOND CALL OF DUTY IN WORLD WAR II IS THAT OF / MAJOR THOMAS DRY HOWIE / THE GALLANT MAJOR OF ST. LO WHO LED A / SUICIDE MISSION WHICH CLEARED THAT BARRIER / TO THE NORMANDY BEACH HEAD, BUT NOT TILL, HE / HAS GIVEN HIS LIFE DIRECTING THAT SUCCESSFUL / ATTACK. HIS DEVOTED MEN PRESSED ON VICTORIOUSLY / AND CARRIED HIS BODY INTO THE CITY / AT HEAD OF THEIR COLUMN. HIS SISTER, MRS. HUBERT S. PLASTER, AND DR. PLASTER / HAVE PLANTED
THIS PARK ENTRANCE AS A TRIBUTE / TO HIS MEMORY THAT OTHERS MIGHT ENJOY THESE / PLANTS AND THE FREEDOM FOR WHICH HE LITERALLY / FOR GOT HIMSELF INTO IMMORTALITY.
Entrance sign: MAJOR THOMAS D. / HOWIE MEMORIAL / “THE MAJOR OF ST. LO”
Rededication sign: MAJOR HOWIE MEMORIAL / REFURBISHED AND REDEDICATED / JUNE 6, 2015 / ASHLEY POPWELL, GRACE RIBADENEYRA, / BAILEY STRICKLAND, EMILY WHITE AND ERIN WHITE / GIRL SCOUT TROOP 20308
City of Shelby Parks and Recreation
Circa 1965. Rededication: June 6, 2015
35.292670 , -81.556620 View in Geobrowse
Hoover, Dan. “D-Day Heroes Live in Legend,” The Greenville News (Greenville, SC), June 6, 2005
White, Susan. “You Report the News: Girl Scouts Refurbish Howie Memorial,” ShelbyDailyStar.com, June 1, 2015, (accessed November 9, 2016) Link
“The Major of St. Lo,” Alumni News Of The Citadel, www.thecitadelmemorialeurope.org, Winter 1972-1973, (accessed November 9, 2016) Link
“Thomas D. Howie, The Major of St. Lo,” The Historical Marker Database, HMdb.org, (accessed November 9, 2016). Link
Bronze, stone, brick
Dr. and Mrs. Hubert S. Plaster
After Howie’s death and his men had entered the city of St. Lo, they carried his body to the rubble of a church. The photo of his body there draped with the American flag was one of the most famous of World War II. Many memorials have been placed to honor Howie. There are two in St. Lo to include one on the wall of Sainte-Croix in St. Lo where his body was placed after his death. It is thought that the character of Captain John Miller played by Tom Hanks in the movie “Saving Private Ryan” was based on Major Howie.
The memorial can be found at the intersection of Howie Drive and W. Marion Street near the Cleveland County Memorial Library, in Shelby, NC.
The memorial complex is located on an open field with several scattered trees in a short distance of it.