HomeSM's Blecksmith to Speak at ‘Enduring Heroes’ Ceremony

SM’s Blecksmith to Speak at ‘Enduring Heroes’ Ceremony

Ed Blecksmith, the Gold Star father of the late J.P. Blecksmith, will be among those speaking at the dedication ceremony of the Enduring Heroes Memorial in Pasadena on Memorial Day.
J.P. Blecksmith, who hailed from San Marino, was killed in action in Fallujah, Iraq, on Nov. 11, 2004. He was a second lieutenant in the U.S. Marines. He and 10 other locals killed during deployments in Iraq, Afghanistan and other areas for the War on Terror will be memorialized with a new monument.
“The Enduring Heroes Memorial and dedication will honor these young men and women who stepped into the breach to keep this nation free and independent and who made the ultimate sacrifice to ensure that freedom,” said Ed Blecksmith, who served in the Marines during the Vietnam War, in a statement.
Soldiers being honored with the memorial hail from Pasadena, Altadena, La Cañada Flintridge and San Marino and also include 1st Lt. Todd Bryant (U.S. Army), Lance Cpl. Dion Whitley (Marines), Lance Cpl. Sergio Escobar (Marines), Spc. Carla Stewart (Army Reserves), Spc. Adam Rosema (Army), Pvt. 1st Class Cory Hiltz (Army), Lance Cpl. Rogelio Ramirez (Marines), Spc. William Gilbert (Army), Green Beret SSG Scott Studenmund (Army) and Sgt. Joseph Stifter (Army).
Lt. Col. David Diamond, the special assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations at the Pentagon, will be the keynote speaker. Ed Blecksmith, along with Enduring Heroes Committee Chair Shelly Lowe, Pasadena Mayor Terry Tornek and Congressman Adam Schiff will give remarks at the ceremony.
“He’s going to have a pretty big part in this celebration,” said Kathryn Mgrublian, a spokeswoman with Enduring Heroes. “It’s going to be an important step in recognizing what our armed forces are doing for our country. It’ll be a time for reflection.”
The bronze sculpture, which depicts a combat soldier holding up an American flag, is in Defenders Park at the corner of Colorado Boulevard and Orange Grove. Enduring Heroes, comprised of Pasadena-area Gold Star families and supporting residents, raised funds for the construction of the memorial.
“We’re proud to see Pasadena take a leadership role in building awareness, education and gratitude for our soldiers who gave their lives to protect our nation,” Lowe said. “We thank the strong and diverse group of individuals who came together to support this monument and who saw the need to honor our local soldiers.”


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