LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (News release) – Several people from the community came together this morning to pay their respects to a US Army veteran with no relatives.
The Arkansas Veterans Coalition, in cooperation with the Veterans of Foreign Wars Department of Arkansas invited the public to attend this funeral for 65-year-old Army veteran, Leonard Dale Barefield. The service happened at 9:00 a.m. on January 17, at the Arkansas State Veterans Cemetery in North Little Rock.
The Arkansas Veterans Coalition along with complete strangers came together as a family for a proper and honorable military burial service.
“It’s very sad when at the end of life someone has to be alone after having and willing to make that type of sacrifice, and it’s up to us to make sure that that sacrifice is honored. So when an unclaimed soldier like this come to our attention we make sure we are here for him,” said Will Beams the President of The Arkansas Veterans Coalition.
PFC Leonard Dale Barefield, a U.S. Army Veteran, tragically passed away on December 3, 2019 in a house fire in Morrilton. He is survived by countless brothers and sisters in arms and many caring veterans, some of which will be present to ensure a proper and honorable Military Burial Service.
“Our military service veterans deserve to be honored, and this is just another way we can honor their service,” says Will Beams, Coalition President. “We want PFC Barefieldto be remembered honorably, and the public as well as all veterans are encouraged to attend the funeral to demonstrate that no veteran remains alone at the end of a life that was once offered for service and sacrifice to his country!”
PFC Barefieldserved honorably for three years, ten months, and 23 days on active duty, plus three years of inactive service. His primary Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) was 17C10, Field Artillery Target Acquisition Specialist. PFC Barefieldwas assigned to Battery B, 333d Field Artillery, 7th Infantry Division, Fort Ord, California FC. His military awards include: National Defense Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, U.S. Army Parachutist Badge, Rifle M-16 (Sharpshooter), and Hand Grenade (Expert).
Martin Bradley VFW Post #4453 in Morrilton was the lead group for this service, in cooperation with Bob Neal & Sons Funeral Home in Morrilton, as well as several other veteran’s organizations including the Patriot Guard Riders, Arkansas Veterans Coalition, American Legion Post #71 (Cabot), the Arkansas Army National Guard Military Funeral Honors Program at Camp Robinson in North Little Rock, and veterans from across the State of Arkansas.