Ozzie Esseson, One of Last Living WWII Marine Paratroopers, to be Honored April 18 at Tallgrass Creek

OVERLAND PARK, KS (April 8, 2013) - Ozzie Eggeson, one the last living WWII Marine Paratroopers, will be honored by Tallgrass Creek retirement community on Thursday, April 18, at a Quilts of Valor Ceremony in Overland Park, KS. Thirteen WWII, Korean War and Vietnam War veterans who live at Tallgrass Creek retirement community along with Eggeson will receive Quilts of Valor. Each quilt will have a special patch on it that lists the veteran's name, military branch and years of service. There were 3,500 Marine Paratroopers in WWII. Just a few hundred are said to be alive today. Eggeson, who was a member of the First Parachute Battalion of the U.S. Marine Corps, saw combat at Guadalcanal and the islands of Vella Lavella and Bougainville. "It was very scary," he said. "There was very little distant vision." Eggeson, a former data manager for Ralston-Purina Company who moved to Tallgrass Creek from his former home in Kansas City, Missouri, will also be presented with an advance  copy of "Heroes in Our Midst," a book in which he is featured. Author John R. Angolia will present the book to Eggeson. The Tallgrass Creek Quilters worked with the Kansas City chapter of Quilts of Valor to help make the quilts they will provide to Eggeson and his fellow the veterans.  Resident Elaine Alexander suggested the Quilt of Valor ceremony.  The quilters say it has been an honor and a joy to make these quilts for the veterans . Quilters from all over Kansas, and a few from Missouri, have worked together to make the quilts. Several quilters usually worked on each quilt before it was completed.  The work was broken down into three steps: (1) piecing the top, (2) machine quilting it, and (3) putting on the binding.  Respect and gratitude were stitched into the quilt at each step. The Quilts of Valor Foundation (: http://qovf.org/ ) is an organization dedicated to the recognition of current and former members of the military by presenting them with quilts.  Many of the quilts go to the wounded who are hospitalized recovering from their wounds.  They also go to active and past members of the armed services who served their country in times of war. WHEN/WHERE:Thursday, April 18 (9:30 -10 30 a.m.),  in the Living Room at Tallgrass Creek retirement community, 13800 Metcalfe Avenue, Overland Park, KS 66223