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Veteran Pentacle Gravestone now in North Carolina

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  • Paula/MamaCat
    Circle Times wrote: The latest pentacle gravestone issued by the US Department of Veterans Affairs was placed today in a
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 7, 2007
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      Circle Times <circletimes@...> wrote:
      The latest pentacle gravestone issued by the US Department of Veterans
      Affairs was placed today in a family cemetery plot in rural North Carolina.

      This gravestone honors the life, service, and sacrifice of eighteen year
      old Stephen P. Snowberger III who was killed in action in Iraq on May 11,
      2006. Stephen was a Wiccan soldier and member of the Baghdad-based
      Victory Base Open Circle, sponsored by the Sacred Well Congregation.

      Stephen's mother and next of kin, Deborah Brown, of North Carolina, wished
      to honor her son with a pentacle inscribed gravestone issued by the US
      Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). She also wanted to have the
      gravestone placed in a family plot on her land.

      When Stephen was killed in action, the pentacle was not on the VA's list of
      emblems of belief that could be included on the gravestones it issued.

      Selena Fox brought this need to properly honor Stephen and his mother's
      request to the attention to the head of the National Cemetery
      Administration of the US Department of Veterans Affairs shortly after he
      died and then again in her face-to-face meeting with him and other VA
      officials on July 5, 2006 at VA headquarters in Washington, DC.

      At last, Deborah's request has been fulfilled.

      On April 20, 2007, Selena and Americans United for Separation of Church and
      State filed Deborah's grave marker application and request with the US
      Department of Justice representing the US Department of Veterans Affairs
      just prior to signing the settlement agreement of the federal lawsuit,
      Circle Sanctuary vs. Nicholson. This settlement resulted in the VA finally
      putting the Pentacle on its list of emblems of belief that can be included
      on the gravestones it issues. The pentacle was added to the list on April
      23, 2007.

      Since Deborah wanted the gravestone placed with Stephen's cremains on
      private family land, additional work was needed to make this possible.
      Selena Fox of Circle Sanctuary, Marci Drewry of the Sacred Well
      Congregation, and JD Walker of the House of Akasha collaborated in
      providing additional support to Deborah in making arrangements for this
      private family cemetery plot option for the gravestone placement.

      These arrangements were finalized last week, and the production of the
      marker moved forward. In her phone call with VA staff last week, Selena
      requested that the production and delivery be expedited, and if possible,
      produced and delivered before Veterans Day. The VA did this.

      Stephen's marble marker with pentacle was delivered this afternoon.

      Deborah, assisted by her husband and a neighbor, placed the marker in the
      family cemetery plot on her land just before dusk. A marker dedication
      service is being planned by Deborah, Selena, Marci, and JD for early
      December.

      This coming weekend, Stephen will be among those honored in a Veterans Day
      parade in North Carolina and in the Veterans Day Circle at Circle Sanctuary
      Nature Preserve near Barneveld, Wisconsin.
      http://www.circlesanctuary.org/veteransday2007/

      Please remember Stephen and the other deceased Wiccan/Pagan veterans who
      have received pentacle markers this year as well as honor the living
      Wiccan/Pagan veterans and those on active duty in your own Veterans Day
      observances.

      A photo of Stephen's pentacle gravestone, taken by his mother shortly after
      the marker was delivered, is now on-line at our Veteran Pentacle Quest
      Success website:
      http://www.circlesanctuary.org/liberty/veteranpentacle

      A tribute page for Stephen is at:
      http://starsoffreedom.tripod.com/fallenheroesintro.htm#pfc_stephen_snowberger_iii

      Blessed Be.


      Circle Times: Tuesday, November 6, 2007
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      I cry because you are all the same."

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      Check out our web site!
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