Ranger Exes Memorial - RHS Class of 1967

Larry Rodgers LARRY JOE RODGERS was killed in action in Vietnam in 1968. He enlisted in the U.S. Marines after graduation in 1967 from Ranger High School at Ranger, TX and was sent to Vietnam after his training and died there. Vietnam Moving Wall Memorial Vietnam Moving Wall Memorial (Panel #45, Line 14) During the end of January 1968, the North Vietnamese launched the deadly tet offensive against U.S. Forces. Joel Jimenez (RHS-1966), Mike Landtroop (RHS-1966), David Dunson (RHS-1966), Robert Butch Seymour of Olden, Larry Rainey of Ranger, Maynard Clayton, Larry G. Monroe (RHS-1966), & many other Eastland County soldiers were there. We made it home. The brave soldier I want to recognize is Larry Joe Rodgers, a U.S. Marine from Ranger, who was killed in Vietnam. His mother, Virgie Horton, still lives on Pine street in Ranger and shared her memories and information with me. She said that Larry's dream from the time he was a small child was to be a soldier. He recognized his dream and although he lost his life, he saved the lives of numerous comrades. Larry Rodgers was awarded the Vietnamese decree, the Military Merit medal, The Gallantry Cross with Palm, the Purple Heart, and the Silver Star posthumously. (From a tribute by Larry G. Monroe) Silver Star citation: Commander In Chief United States Pacific Fleet The President of the United States takes pride in presenting the Silver Star Medal posthumously to Private First Class Larry J. Rodgers, United States Marine Corps for service as set forth in the following: CITATION "For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving as a Rifle man with Company D, First Battalion, Seventh Marines, First Marine Division in connection with operations against the enemy in the Republic of Vietnam. On the afternoon of 17 March, 1968, during Operation WORTH, Private First Class Rodgers company was assaulting a large, well entrenched North Vietnamese Arm force. As the Marines maneuvered forward, they began receiving intense automatic weapons, mortar and anti-tank rocket fire. In the initial burst of fire, all members of the lead squad's machine gun team were wounded. Disregarding his own safety, Private First Class Rodgers seized the weapon and immediately began delivering a heavy volume of machine gun fire against the enemy positions, which enabled his unit to maneuver to covered positions. Ignoring the hostile fire impacting around him, he resolutely remained in his dangerously exposed position and continued firing the weapon for ten minutes until he was mortally wounded by enemy automatic weapons fire. By his courage, aggressive fighting spirit and steadfast devotion to duty, Private First Class Rodgers upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service." For the President signed John J. Hyland Admiral, U.S. Navy Commander in Chief U.S. Pacific Fleet MOTHER: VIRGIE RUTH SHUMATE RODGERS HORTON, 93 of Ranger, TX, passed away on Sept. 4, 2021 in Eastland. Virgie was born on April 14, 1928 in Midlothian, TX to Clarence Virgil Shumate & Willie Vernell Shumate. She was married to Billy Joe Rodgers, and later to Jack Albert Burrow. She then married Charles Edwin Horton (RHS-1962). She was a proud "Gold Star Mom", and a member of Trinity Baptist Church in Strawn. She enjoyed watching Harold Salem and the Hazel show on T.V. She liked playing the piano, taking care of her cats, and reading her Bible. She had a passion for watching hummingbirds and tending to her plants. She was preceded in death by a son, Larry Joe Rodgers; a daughter, Bonnie Gail Rogers; and a brother, Ronald Eugene Shumate. Survivors include her husband, Charles Horton; daughter, Carla Sharp; sister, Carolyn Garvin (Billy); 4 grand- children, Mandy Ponce De Leon, Ron Wallace, Jeri Lynn & Clay Withrow, Ben Sharp, and Ariel LeAnn Sharp and Travis Shelley; 4 great-grandchildren, Elizabeth & Isaiah Arellano, Hagen Ray Tanner, Aiden Don Tanner, and Owen Dale Shelley.