Wall Of Honor Recognizes Area Veterans

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Walking along the front aisles inside Athens Wal-Mart it is hard to miss the array of pictures on the front wall and a nearby display. They're not just random photographs, however. Each one of the 600 or so photos has special meaning.

Each depicts a person from the Athens area who has served or is currently serving in the military. Veteran Norman Allen, who approached the store four years ago with the idea of the expanded display, said some of the photos date back to World War I. There are also photos of current military members. 

To start, Allen asked the store managers to take a photo of the Vietnam War plaque at the Athens County Courthouse. The plaque lists the names of the 31 Athens County soldiers who were killed in the war. Allen requested that each name on the plaque be able to be read as a part of the display. That photo became a central part of the display that is there today. 

Allen credits the management and the associates at the store for making the display what it is currently, saying that the teamwork of those individuals is what keeps the tapestry of photos growing. 

Each year Wal-Mart stores around the country have Wall of Honor displays to coincide with Veterans Day. Many of those stores, such as Athens, have a permanent display honoring the military. 

According to Allen, the Athens display is one of the largest in the area. 

Photos are added on a weekly basis according to Wal-Mart zone manager Dennis McNally. He added that he was glad to see the display keep expanding. 

Those who are interested in placing a photo of a past or present military member can bring a picture to the photo lab at the store where a copy of it will be made at no charge and placed in the display.