Gainesville Daily Register

Local News

May 30, 2011

Texas Purple Heart recpients to gather in Gainesville

Gainesville —

The City of Gainesville is set to be the host of the Military Order of the Purple Heart State Convention this June.

The event will take place beginning June 9 at the Quality Inn, which sits just off Interstate 35 and California Street.

According to coordinator Fred Rosenbaum, Commander John Footmen came to Gainesville during his trip to meet with all the chapters across the state. Rosenbaum had arranged for chapter 612 of Sherman and 744 of Gainesville to meet the Commander, simultaneously. After the Commander’s impressive visit to the Winstar Casino and Resort, Rosenbaum and the chapter were asked to coordinate and host the state convention.

Rosenbaum, who received his Purple Heart during his service in the Vietnam War, is the founder of the Military Order of the Purple Heart chapter 744. The chapter is one of the smallest chapters in the state. Chapter 744 has a total of 21 members and their primary goal is to provide college scholarships to direct decedents of Purple Heart recipients. Rosenbaum mentioned that since its start, chapter 744 has given out about $10,000 dollars in scholarships.

“As far as Texas is concerned, it will put Gainesville on the map,” Rosenbaum said. “Nobody knows Gainesville. Everybody knows El Paso, San Antonio, Austin. Those are the big chapters. In fact, next year the convention is probably going to be at Nacogdoches. See these are big cities, nobody thinks of Gainesville, Texas. And, we are going to really put on a show for them.”

According to Rosenbaum, about 80 members are expected to attend from all over the state of Texas.

The Thursday of the convention, the guests will arrive and kick off the weekend with a showing of “Friendly Persuasion,” a movie with Gary Cooper and Dorothy McGuire, at the State Theater. The event will carry into Friday, where the bulk of the activities are to take place. During the opening ceremonies, Lori Hart is slated to sing the National Anthem, Mayor Jim Goldsworthy will then give the guests a welcome to Gainesville and County Judge John Roane will read the proclamation “The Day of The Purple Heart.”

According to Rosenbaum, another guest of honor will be Congressman Michael C. Burgess, who will speak at the banquet Friday night.

Throughout the entire event, additional respect will be paid to the veteran’s of World War II who Rosenbaum refereed to as the “greatest generation.” The name is in reference to the book written by Tom Brokaw.



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