It was a beautiful, sunny day as an estimated 200-plus people gathered near the grave site of Civil War Veteran Henry B. Mattingly (pictured to the right) for a special memorial and dedication service on May 22, 2010.
Henry Mattingly was a private in the Union Army during the Civil War whose valor earned him the Congressional Medal of Honor, the highest medal that the nation can bestow. But his grave site marker did not show that he was a recipient of that honor. (You can read more about that on another web page.)
The memorial service and dedication of a new, properly marked, grave marker was held, led by Master Sergent (retired) José Rosario, who had worked for nearly two years researching Pvt. Mattingly and getting the new marker.
Well over twenty-five descendants of Pvt. Mattingly were the special guests. Soldiers from Ft. Knox participated, providing usher service, a twenty-one gun solute, and a bugle player playing taps. Spc. Hightower sang the national anthem, which carried wonderfully across the cemetery grounds.
The Patriot Guard Riders provided a dramatic color guard, with flags. The Shepherdsville Fire Department, assisted by the LJ Fire Department, provided a large ladder truck, holding a huge American flag high up in the air. Civil War reenactors Gregg and Don Elden stood nearby, dressed with the same type uniform and same regimental markings as Henry Mattingly would have worn, and a period flag flowing in the breeze.
LJ Mayor James Sweat spoke. Rev. Tom Wicker prayed the invocation, and closing prayers.
At the close of the ceremony, family descendants laid a wreath at the grave and everyone came up to the grave site to pay their respects.
It was a beautiful ceremony, with even many of the military veterans barely holding back tears.
A brief video of the event has been uploaded to YouTube and may be viewed below.
Please note that, while we are grateful to YouTube for providing this service, we do not necessarily recommend viewing other videos that are offered by YouTube after viewing this one.