Seven veterans honored with Quilts of Valor during Veterans Day ceremony

Julie Davis, CherryRoad Media

Seven area veterans were honored during two Quilts of Valor presentation ceremonies at the Nebraska City Veterans Memorial Building on Saturday, Nov. 13.

The first group of honorees were Nebraska City residents Steven M. David, Lynn M. Heng, Timothy Reidy, and William Joseph Thummel. The second group of honorees were Charles Ascheman of Tecumseh, Richard E. Bristol of Nebraska City, and Bill John Cropp of Cook.

Steven M. David enlisted in the United States Navy in October 1994.  He served a total of 20 years, achieving the rank of E-7.  Steven received naval training at Great Lakes Naval Base, at a naval base in Orlando, Fla., and at the Trident Training Facility at the Naval Air Station in Jacksonville, Fla.  

David served aboard the U.S.S. Wyoming, SSBN 742 Naval Recruiting unit at New York City.  He served during nine SSBN submarine deployments.  During his military career, he was awarded 3 Navy Achievement medals, 2 Navy Commendation medals, 4 Good Conduct and 2 National Defense medals, along with a War on Terrorism Service medal.

David lists his hometown as Plainville, Kan., where he graduated from Plainville High School.  He and his partner, Roberto, now call Nebraska City their home.  He is employed at Cooper Nuclear as a reactor services manager.

Lynn M. Heng enlisted in the U.S. Army on Dec. 20, 1986; he has continued to serve since that time, and is still serving today.  He was sent to Ft. Knox, Kentucky for basic training., and he was assigned to the Joint Forces Headquarters.  

Heng’s unit was deployed to Operation Joint Force [Bosnia]; two deployments to Operation Enduring Freedom in Kosovo and Afghanistan.  He has received multiple awards and decorations, and he currently holds the rank of brigadier general.  

He is a native of Nebraska City and a graduate of Lourdes Central Catholic.  He and his wife, Sharon, live in Nebraska City.

Timothy Reidy enlisted in the United States Air Force on March 30, 1988.  He served a total of 21 years and six months.  He was sent to Lackland Air Force Base in Texas for training.  He served with the Air Force Space Command, Headquarters European Command, and at the Texas Cryptologic Center.

Reidy was awarded an Air Force Commendation Medal and a Joint Service Commendation Medal.  

He lists his hometown as Moline, Ill., where he graduated from Moline High School.  He and his wife, Regina, currently live in Nebraska City.  For the past 12 years he has been employed at the U.S. Strategic Command Center.

William Joseph “Bill” Thummel enlisted in the United States Army on March 21, 1961.  He served his country for three years, achieving the rank of sergeant E-5.  Bill received his basic training at Fort Sill, Okla.  He was assigned to the Artillery, 4th Armored Division in Germany.

Thummel’s unit was part of a peace-keeping mission on a U.S. Military base in Germany; they provided security for the military base as well as a presence in the surrounding area for citizens of Germany.  

Thummel and his wife, Ginny, currently reside in Nebraska City.

Charles “Chuck” Ascheman served with the United States Navy from 1993 to 1997.  He received his naval training at the Great Lakes Naval Base in Chicago, Ill.  He was assigned to the 1st Field Marine Force, stationed out of San Diego, Calif.

His unit was deployed to Iraq with a Marine Unit; he served in the position of a Navy Corpsman.  During his military assignment, he spent time at the Balboa Military Hospital in San Diego.

Ascheman’s hometown is Blue Rapids, Kan.  He and his wife, April, currently live in Tecumseh.

Richard E. Bristol enlisted in the United States Marines in January1982 in Denver, Colo. He was sent for training to Quantico, Va., with a Special Assignment unit.  Bristol served as a rifle and pistol expert, and was deployed as part of a Special Ops campaign.  Due to an injury, his military career was shortened, and he received an honorable discharge.  

Richard graduated from Wasson High School in Colorado Springs, Colo. He and his wife, Lisa, currently live in Nebraska City.  He is the behavioral health chaplain for CHI Hospital at three hospitals in Omaha and Council Bluffs.  

Bill John Cropp enlisted in the U.S. Army Reserves in June 1964.  He served a total of six years in the military and achieved the rank of staff sergeant, E-6.  Bill received basic training at Fort Lewis, Wash., and AIT at Fort Ord, Calif.  He was assigned to the 355th Regiment, 89th Division as a sharpshooter.

Cropp’s hometown is Cook, and he is a graduate of the Cook Community Schools.  He and his wife, Carolyn, currently reside in Cook. He has served as the Commander of the Bickel-Nelson No. 360 American Legion post in Cook for more than 15 years.

The Blue Star Mothers of Nebraska, Chapter 1 in Nebraska City. is one of 200 chapters across the nation that comprise Blue Star Mothers of America, which has more than 6,000 members nationwide.  Blue Star Mothers groups across the country provide assistance in many ways to family members of deployed soldiers, as well as services to veterans upon returning to civilian life.

In 2017, the chapter began participating in the National Quilts of Valor movement as a service project.  Since the members began this journey, they have made and awarded quilts to 134 veterans thus far.  

According to the national Quilts of Valor Foundation website, 20,918 quilts have been awarded across the United States in 2021.  Since the Quilts of Valor project began in 2003, 286,178 Quilts of Valor have been awarded to military service men and women, and veterans.

Lynn Heng
Steven M. David
Timothy Reidy
William Joseph Thummel
Charles Ascheman
Bill John Cropp
Richard E. Bristol