© 2003 - 2017 David K. & Leona L. Gustafson

Alton M. E. Cemetery
Alton, Prairie Township,
Franklin County, Ohio

Memorial Day, 2003 Photographs

During a beautiful ceremony held on Memorial Day, 26 May 2003, two Civil War veteran's were honored by Franklin County's Operation Flag.  One of these two, John Hammond, has no direct descendants as he died during the war, before ever having the chance to marry and have children.  But John T. O'Harra does have many descendants, some still living nearby.  One of these descendants, great-grandson Asa O'Harra with his wife Mary, is shown above placing a wreath on John T. O'Harra's newly dedicated gravestone.

In addition to the new military gravestones that were dedicated during the Memorial Day ceremonies several of the original stones were decorated.  These stones were put back in place when the cemetery was restored and fenced on 10 November 2002.  Links to the photographs of the gravestones appear below as do some of the other photographs taken at the ceremony.

Aerial Photo of Cemetery,
taken March/April 2000


Program, Operation Flag, May 26, 2003

(Click on the underlined name to view the photograph)

  • Color Guards
    • Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War under the direction of Cmdr. David E. McMahone, M.D.
    • U.S. Naval Sea Cadets, Columbus Chapter under the direction of Pat Yaconis
    • Franklin Heights High School NJROTC under the direction of Capt. Thomas Lennon, USN Ret. (No photo available.)
    • Westland High School AFROTC under the direction of Msgt. William Hoy
  • Introduction by Joe Testa, Franklin County Auditor and Founder & Chairman, Operation Flag--It's almost time to begin.
  • Observe National Moment of Remembrance
    • Posting of Colors by Color Guards
    • Pledge of Allegiance by Merle Pratt, Ret. Navy Chief, Deputy Director, Ohio Attorney General Jim Petro
    • Invocation by Chaplain Ken Daft, Col., Ohio Army National Guard
  • Program Remarks
    • Joe Testa
    • State Rep. Larry Wolpert
    • State Sen. Steve Stivers
  • Graveside Reading by Greg Brown, Sons of Union Veterans
  • Decoration of the grave of Pvt. John O'Harra by Asa O'Harra (photo above)
  • Decoration of the grave of Pvt. John Hammond by Greg Brown
  • Amazing Grace, played by Lt. George Fulcher, Columbus Division of Fire
  • Benediction by Chaplain Ken Daft
  • Final Honors Rendered - Ohio Army National Guard, STARC, under direction of First Sgt. Becky Herzog (Photo taken before ceremony)
  • Taps, played by Doug Weakley, Warrant Officer, U.S. Army (Ret.)

  • Special thanks to the Prairie Township Trustees, especially Dave McAninch; Sharon Lytle; Michael Sekeres; Greg Brown; Nola Freeman; Charles Thompson; Ronald and Billie Cobb; Harold and Mary Cook; Broadview Mortgage; Papa John's Pizza, 4960 W. Broad St.; Kroger, W. Broad St.; Keebler; Mark Calhoun; Todd Adamson; Ross Chambers; Tom Lafferty and Maggie Wilkins; Carol Montrose; Shelley May and all of the volunteers who assisted with this year's restoration project.


(Click on the underlined name to view the photograph)

  • Fippin, Mary, died Nov 12, 1868, aged 71 yrs 5 mo __ds
  • Hammond, John, PVT, CO A, 40 OHIO VOL INF, 1841-1862
  • Harrington, Emily T., dau of N & D [rest illegible]
  • Ingalls, Isaac, son of H & E, died June 19, 1858, aged 13 yrs 3 mos 28 ds (with date)
  • McFarling, [Broken], died Sept 19, 1844, aged 5 yea 4 mo & 9 days

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