Memorial Day Ceremony at Brookside Cemetery honors Maves, Tressler for military service

CW5 Ralph Bird and four members of his family, all U.S. Military personnel, served as the Honor Guard at Brookside Cemetery on Monday where they performed two flag dedications. The flags were presented by Bird, pictured on left saluting the widow, Phyllis, of Master Sergeant Donald F. Maves, and, on right, to Major Jay Tressler. Photos by Jim Lincoln.

Editor’s note: Two local military heros were honored on Monday: Donald F. Maves was recognized posthumously for his service with his widow, Phyllis Maves receiving an Honor Flag; and tribute and Honor Flag was presented to Jay Tressler for his dedicated service. The following was written by Bob Elliott, of Tecumseh.


Master Sergeant Donald F. Maves, United States Army 3rd Division, 39th Field Artillery Company C

In American history the Korean War is known as the “Forgotten War.” It certainly wasn’t forgotten by the brave men that fought there. Our own Don Maves was one of those men. Battles such as Heart Break Ridge, Pork Chop Hill and the Chosen Reservoir were several of the many engagements Americans would fight. The war was also known as an artillery war. Don was an artilleryman and his unit effectively used the 105mm Howitzer. For almost a year in Korea, Don fought a fanatical and desperate enemy under the most adverse conditions such as weather and terrain, and carried out his duty faithfully.

His division would be known as the “Fire Brigade” for their ability to rapidly respond to any crisis that arose. The division would have over 10,000 casualties with over 2,000 of them being killed in action. They would receive 10 battle stars and have 11 men receive the Congressional Medal of Honor.

In a letter from Don’s Commanding Officer Lt. Colonel John V. Roddy, a Silver Star winner, he commended Don and expressed his appreciation for him being always ready for action throughout all the operations and always willing and ready to accomplish any and all missions assigned. He would go on to say that Don’s excellent combat spirit and selfless consideration reflected a degree and ability of devotion to duty that was in keeping with the highest traditions of military service. He said that his performance as a soldier was outstanding.

Don served his country proudly from 1951 to 1959. A true patriot for over 25 years, Don and his good friend Dick Cangly could always be seen in Tecumseh putting flags out through town on major holidays and here in Brookside Cemetery on soldiers’ graves for Memorial Day. Don was a lifetime member and past commander of our local American Legion Post and the 40/8.

To the proud family and to the memory of Master Sergeant Donald F. Maves, one of our own.


Major Jay Tressler, Michigan National Guard, United States Air Force

Jay Tressler grew up in Tecumseh and graduated from high school here in 1948. He started his 25 years serving his country in 1949 in the Michigan National Guard, switching over to the U.S. Air Force in 1950. With 18 different assignments, three at the Pentagon and three overseas, plus involvement in the Korean War and Vietnam War, his career was quite extensive. When he retired from the Air Force, he came back to Tecumseh with his family. Major Jay Tressler served his country faithfully and he is very proud of that, just as we are proud to honor him today.


Tecumseh Herald


110 E. Logan St.
P.O. Box 218
Tecumseh, MI 49286

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