Kenneth Lee Worley Bronze Memorial Challenge
By Bruce Salisbury
We have been discussing our Mystery Marine for almost a year now and from the beginning of the conversation I have advocated a bronze figure of this Medal Of Honor Hero. He has been unknown, ignored, and forgotten in his home town and across America these last four decades.
Mail coming in to Farmington, New Mexico seems to confirm that people appreciate the power of this image. While Farmington is now in the process of planning to build three equal size memorial markers for Congressional Medal Of Honor recipients USMC Kenneth Lee Worley, US Army Franklin Miller, and US Army Jose Valdez, and each of these surely deserves being honored, I continue to work toward the bronze memorial of Worley which I advocated from the very beginning, as follows:
A Memorial Bronze to honor Lance Corporal Kenneth Lee Worley, USMC, CMOH.
I would like to see a bronze of Kenneth Lee Worley shown standing easy in his combat gear and alongside him a bronze of one of the Young Marines who are dedicated to Worley’s honor. The young man, age 8 or 9 to be looking up and saluting his hero.
Conceptually, the Young Marine will represent Worley when he was young and dreaming of growing up. It will represent Worley harking back to his childhood, as well as his son, who Worley never met, and young people all over America who look up to the ideal of heroism.
I don’t think Worley should be presented in Dress Uniform or wearing medals or devices other than his rifle and gear and working tools of a Marine Lance Corporal in Vietnam in 1968.
The more we learn about Worley the more we admire him and his courage. His Marine Corps family needs to be heard from too, so I am making a proposal:
I would like to ask if Marine Corps personnel along with Marine Corps Reserve and all families and friends of Marines, and those masses of men who served in the
USMC and thus are forever a Marine would be willing to gather money for the memorial bronze.
The cost estimate is $100,000 and the first bronze completed will be located as near as possible to Worley’s home town of Farmington, New Mexico Perhaps there
can be enough money gathered to make more than one bronze, (and miniatures as well).
I was visiting an active Army National Guard friend and he declared: “I will be pleased to donate a hundred bucks and work at getting the word around!” My wife and I have donated several hundred dollars toward the bronze, and I will do what I can (as a writer) to share the news with the five uniformed armed services, and with media all across America.
The MOUNT KIAMIA MEMORIAL Board in Aztec, New Mexico met on 13 May 2009 and the Board of Directors voted to make the completion of a bronze of Kenneth Lee Worley and The Young Marine their first major project. The Sculptor chosen was Tom White. This sketch of Worley is Tom’s first rough drawing and if you will go to his website at: tomwhitestudio.com you can appreciate how wonderfully detailed his work is. He has done several Medal of Honor bronzes.
We have contacted some of the men who served with Worley and they have offered to advise the Sculptor on the clothing and equipment that Kenneth would be wearing when he achieved the Congressional Medal Of Honor.
Money can be sent to MOUNT KIAMIA MEMORIAL, located in Aztec, NM. This is a 501 ( c ) ( 3 ) organization exempt under IRS code and is further recognized as a Public Charity. The Citizens Bank is caring for the fund and is located at 205 S. Main Aztec, New Mexico 87410 Telephone (505) 566-4923 FAX (505) 334-7565 Attn: Vivian Giles.
Money can also be sent to me via check but please put PAY TO THE ORDER OF MOUNT KIAMIA MEMORIAL on your check. Mount KIA/MIA Memorial is also recognized by the New Mexico Public Regulations Commission as a Public Charity. We honor all the nations killed and missing in action from all five of America’s uniformed armed services and from all of our wars.
Bruce L Salisbury
MSG, US Army & USAF (Retired)
PO Box 744
Aztec, NM, 87410
See more on Kenneth at AmericanValor.com: