Sunday, July 14, 2024

Columbia River Quilt Guild honors three veterans during APJ


PATEROS – As it has done for several years now, the Columbia River Quilt Guild honored military veterans with the presentation of custom-made Veterans Quilts during last weekend’s Apple Pie Jamboree.

Quilts were presented to Pat McFadden of Bridgeport, Wayne Maitland of Pateros, and Glenn Farrington of Brewster.

In prepared remarks, Schluneger delivered a brief recitation of each veteran’s military career prior to each quilt presentation.

“I have said this before, but it bears repeating,” said Schluneger. “A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life wrote a blank check made payable to the United States of America for an amount up to and including their life. That is honor.”

Following his graduation from the University of Idaho with an engineering degree, McFadden attended Naval Officer Candidate school in 1997 with additional flight training in Milton, Fla., Corpus Christi, Texas, and Jacksonville, Fla. Upon receipt of his wings, McFadden joined a patrol squadron at Whidbey Island Naval Air Station in Oak Harbor where he was assigned to fly the PC-3 Orion spy plane.

While completing deployments in Southeast Asia and the Persian Gulf, McFadden commanded aircraft sorties leading up to Operation Iraqi Freedom and flew 40 missions over Iraq and Afghanistan.

McFadden returned to Whidbey in 2005 and in 2009 was selected to command the Naval Operational Support Center in Roanoke, Va.

He amassed more than 2,100 flight hours and nearly 400 combat hours in his 19-year career. Among his military decorations are six Navy Commendation Medals (one with combat “V”), Strike/Flight Air Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, and Navy Achievement Medal.

McFadden, who is still recovering from burns sustained while rescuing his stepson from a fire that destroyed the family home last January, was unable to attend the quilt presentation. His friend, Barry Watson, accepted the gift on his behalf.

Wayne Maitland joined the Navy following the attack on Pearl Harbor and was sworn in June 1943 one day after his 18th birthday. After boot camp Maitland was admitted to radio school and trained in Morse code. He was assigned to the USS Shamrock Bay, a Casablanca-class carrier escort that operated in both the Atlantic and Pacific theaters.

While the crew was waiting for the Shamrock Bay to be commissioned, Maitland was assigned to the chow hall where long hours and little rest contributed to a case of Rheumatic fever. Following a hospital recovery, Maitland was unable to carry out his sea assignment, so he was transferred into communications at the Terminal Island Naval Station in Long Beach, Calif., then an important defense industries center.

Maitland was discharged in May 1946, after two years, 11 months and 14 days of service. He returned to Pateros in 1950 where he worked for Ray Burgett at Union Oil. He contracted Rheumatic fever for a second time and following his recovery, served as Postmaster for the next 28 years.

Maitland was unable to attend the quilt presentation, so his son, Mike, accepted the honor on his father’s behalf.

Glenn Farrington enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1972 and completed boot camp and advanced training at Fort Ord, Calif. He was stationed at Fort Lewis and assigned to the Second Battalion, 39th Infantry Regiment, Ninth Infantry Division.

Farrington served as a squad leader and truck driver responsible for six trucks that hauled everything from troops, munitions, fuel, and supplies. He was discharged in March 1975 with the National Defense Service Medal and Good Conduct Medal.

Farrington returned to the area and was living at Leahy Junction when he joined Post 218 of the Bridgeport American Legion. He later transferred to Columbia Post 97 in Brewster where he is Assistant Director, Secretary, Ride Coordinator and Road Captain with the American Legion Riders, known for their charitable work.


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