An open letter to the City of Corbin and all of Southeastern Kentucky,

My husband, Dean and I would like to thank each and every individual who lined the streets waving flags, saluting and honoring Dean’s Grandfather Ulis Steely as he made his final journey home this past week. The Corbin Police Department, the Corbin Fire Department, the Corbin Lions Club, Whitley County High School ROTC, the American Legion Post 88 and their Honor Guard, Hart Funeral Home, Grace on the Hill Church, Reece Monument, Dean Clontz, Mike Elliott, Minister Bobby Joe Eaton and everyone who had a hand in delivering Ulis to his final resting place; we owe each of you a tremendous debt of gratitude. The list of individuals would take more space than this paper has to print, but you all know who you are.

Ulis was treated with honor and respect through each leg of his journey from inception in Omaha until he came down that ramp and arrived onto the tarmac at Lexington. For that final journey from Lexington Airport, Ulis was escorted by the Kentucky State Police, the Fayette County Sheriff, the Patriot Guard Riders, Rolling Thunder, AMVETS Riders, Combat Vet Riders, and the Christian Motorcycle Riders. Thank you, ladies and gentlemen for escorting Ulis home and honoring his sacrifice.

There remains one soul (or possibly more) who we are unable to personally thank, because you have proven to be an enigma. To whomever took the time and effort, and never stepped up to take credit for your job; thank you for making Ulis’s headstone restored and beautiful again. Your thoughtful actions bring me to tears still as I think about the fact that someone had the forethought and goodness to make the time to do something that made such a profound difference to the family. Each family member had seen the condition of the headstone and we had hoped to have time to make it bright and new again. We would love to know who did that for us, but if you choose to remain anonymous, sign us; forever in your debt.

God bless everyone who made this happen and thank you to the City of Corbin and Southeast Kentucky for restoring my faith in mankind again.


Lorrie Steely

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