DANVILLE – A clock from the decommissioned destroyer USS Kenneth D. Bailey will make its new home at a Danville school that shares its namesake.
Tom Smith of Houston, Texas, will present the clock to the Kenneth D. Bailey Academy students and staff at 9:30 a.m. Thursday at the school’s honors program during which students will receive academic and attendance awards.
Commandant Tom Barrett and the Major Kenneth D. Bailey Detachment of the Marine Corps League and the Danville High School ROTC will present the colors during the event, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance led by student Ashonte Odie and the singing of the National Anthem by DHS junior Christian Cunningham.
Danville YMCA Executive Director Mike Brown will be the guest speaker, and Danyielle Proctor will be recognized for painting the Kenneth D. Bailey mural at the school, 502 E. Main St.
Hillsboro, Ind., residents, Sharon Pederson and Sandy Tarrant, who are Kenneth D. Bailey’s nieces, also will be on hand for the event. Bailey was a Danville High School Class of 1930 graduate who was a Marine, a World War II hero and a recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor, which is the highest military award bestowed in the nation. He earned the medal during fighting on Guadalcanal, where he was later killed in action.
“We’re excited,” Principal Tracy Cherry said of the program. “We have some other things planned, too. The clock will be displayed on the Wall of Honor.”
Cherry explained the school’s Wall of Fame will “recognize the members of our community who have served in the military.”
Smith, who served in the Navy, said, “The Kenneth D. Bailey was the last ship I was on from 1968 to 1970.” In an interesting twist, Smith, who is a genealogy buff, said he recently discovered he is Bailey’s cousin, which he did not realize while he served on the ship. He, Pederson and Tarrant also are cousins.