Oral Raymond Sharp
|Oral Raymond Sharp was born March 19, 1930, in Huntington, West Virginia, the youngest of 7 children born to Edgar and Monnie Powers Sharp. Raymond, as he preferred to be called, attended Cabell Elementary, West Junior High, and Huntington High School prior to joining the Army on February 24, 1948.|
Raymond’s basic training was at Fort Dix, New Jersey. His first assignment was in Washington, DC, where he served two years. During that time, he was part of the Honor Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and participated in General John J. Pershing’s funeral, standing in the rotunda where Pershing’s body lay in state. According to his nephew, Rodger McClain, Raymond liked the service but eventually planned to retire, using his MP experience to become a police officer in Huntington.
|After Washington, Raymond was transferred to Japan where he served in the 19th Infantry, 24th Division, the first Army company sent into Korea at the outbreak of hostilities. Private Raymond Sharp was killed on July 20, 1950, in the Taejon area. At first buried in Korea, in 1951 his body was returned to the United States. On June 24, his funeral, held in Jackson Avenue Baptist Holiness Church, had an overflow crowd and speakers were set up so that those outside could hear the service. His nephew remembers a procession in excess of three miles, after which he was interred in Woodmere Cemetery.|
Photographs courtesy of family
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