Tribal Government & News

Eight names being added to Veterans Memorial on May 29

West Valley Veterans Memorial


By Dean Rhodes

Smoke Signals editor

Eight names, including that of Albert J. “Joe” Martineau, will be added to the West Valley Veterans Memorial during the Monday, May 29, ceremony being held on the Grand Ronde Tribal campus.

Martineau walked on Feb. 1 at the age of 63. He was from the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa of Minnesota and he was a beloved longtime employee of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde as an alcohol and addictions counselor.

Martineau’s name will go up on the Air Force pillar along with the names of Jack Bailey and Jefferie J. Tucker.

The four pillars at the West Valley Veterans Memorial feature the names of Tribal and community members from Grand Ronde, Willamina and Sheridan who served in the four major branches of the U.S. military – Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps. The addition of eight names this year will increase the number of those honored on all four pillars to 2,382.

Other names being added include Grand Ronde Tribal member Jerald W. Tyler on the Navy pillar, Allan Halverson, Benjamin Lee Rogers and Ronney Lee Rogers on the Army pillar and Billy J. Rogers on the Marine Corps pillar.

The Memorial Day ceremony will return to pre-pandemic protocols with a meal being served in the Tribal Community Center starting at noon and the ceremony occurring outside at the West Valley Veterans Memorial starting at 1 p.m.

The memorial was designed by late Tribal Elder Steve Bobb Sr., a Vietnam War-era Marine Corps veteran who walked on in August 2022. It features a man and woman dressed in traditional Native clothing standing side by side while reaching for the sky.

This will be the 20th Memorial Day celebration at the West Valley Veterans Memorial, which was dedicated in May 2003, because the 2020 event was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Additional details about the ceremony were not available before press time.

Attendees also will notice in-progress work on the addition of two new pillars at the memorial because the ones containing names of Army and Navy veterans are reaching capacity.

The Tribe received a $33,000 grant from Oregon State Parks to install the two new black granite slabs.