Andersonville National Cemetery and Others to Honor Private Benjamin, World War II Era U.S. Marine
Contact: Eric Leonard, 229 924-0343, ext. 110
At the wishes of his surviving family, Private James Howard Benjamin, US Marine Corps, will be reinterred to Andersonville National Cemetery on Saturday, May 28, 2011, at 1:00 p.m. with the coordination and support of the Patriot Guard Riders, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6442 (Oglethorpe, Georgia), West Mortuary, and the city of Montezuma, Georgia. Scheduled speakers at the committal service include the Honorable Sanford D. Bishop, Jr., Representative from Georgia's 2nd Congressional District and a representative from the Montford Point Marine Association.
In 1943, PVT Benjamin underwent training at Montford Point, close to Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. The Montford Point Marines were the first African American unit to serve in the Marine Corps and distinguished themselves with an exemplary war record. On October 29th, 1944, during World War II, PVT Benjamin was killed in action while serving our country. Initially buried in Hawaii, his remains were disinterred in 1949 for unknown reasons and he was reburied in Montezuma, Georgia.
PVT Benjamin's remains and surviving family members will be escorted by the Patriot Guard Riders and members of the VFW from the West Mortuary in Montezuma, Georgia, and laid to rest with full military honors at the Andersonville National Cemetery.
For those wishing to participate in the escort, it is requested that you arrive at the West Mortuary (325 Drayton Street) between 12:00 and 12:15. The escort will depart at 12:30. For those wishing to attend the service at Andersonville National Cemetery, please be in place no later than 12:45; the service will begin at 1:00 p.m.
Andersonville National Historic Site is located 10 miles south of Oglethorpe, GA and 10 miles northeast of Americus, GA on Georgia Highway 49. The site features the National Prisoner of War Museum, Andersonville National Cemetery and the location of the Civil War military prison, Camp Sumter. Andersonville National Historic Site is a unit of the National Park System and serves as a memorial to all American prisoners of war. Park grounds are open from 8:00 am until 5:00 pm with the museum opening at 8:30 am. Admission is free. For more information on the park, call 229 924- 0343, visit on the web at www.nps.gov/ande/, or find us on Facebook at facebook.com/AndersonvilleNPS
Did You Know?
The North and South Gates were the only entrances into the Andersonville prison, with the North gate being the primary one. Incoming prisoners were marched about a quarter of a mile to the North gate at the prison.