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An Open Letter to the Buncombe County Commissioners / Diamone Mays and the Confederate Soldiers Monument
Dear Honorable Commissioners,
On Monday June 23 , 2008, little Diamone Mays, a recent graduate of Oakley Elementary School and upcoming 6 grader to Reynolds Middle School, would march me over to Buncombe County Court House where she would began reading aloud these words from one of the monuments stationed there: “ By the Asheville Chapter of the Confederacy and Friends, this monument is erected commemorating the heroic part taken by the 60th Regiment N.C. Volunteers in the great battle of Chickamauga, Sept. 20, 1863. Here it was given post of honor by State Commission appointed in1893 to locate the position of each N.C. regiment in that battle and a marker placed on east margin of Lafayette Pike in Kelly’s Field bearing this inscription; can’t read it she would indicate, pointing to the faded words ! ( She would continue to read on from that which was legible ) Buncombe War Record 1861 – 1865. It furnished a Governor Z.B. Vance, a Confederate Congressman, A.T. Davidson, 2 Generals, R.B. Vance, & T. C. Clingman, 18 Colonels and 21.5 Companies. Troop was at Bethel 1st land engagement June 10, 1861 and in last two Bentonville, N.C. March 19 – 21, 1865, and Appomattox, Va. April 9, 1865, Columbia and Murfreesboro, Tennessee( 2nd battle there ) Thence to end, Bentonville, N.C. March 19- 21, 1865.
After having read the rest of the names on the monument little Diamone pointed to the tree limbs that now almost cover from view the entire monument and said , “ you’ve got to do something about that. No grass she said as she pointed to the bare and heavily trod ground around the base of the monument ; you’ve got to do something about that , and it needs to be cleaned and the words that can’t be seen need to be put back. She then pointed to the revolutionary War monument and said , it too.
On Tuesday June 24th , 2008, Diamone would ask of me had I did anything about the monuments ? I cannot satisfactorily explain the look of disappointment in her face when I said that I forgot. In July of this year at the Sons of Confederate Veterans annual Re-Union to be held in Concord, N.C., little Diamone will received the flag that I carried on my March to the Hunley Burial from the South Carolina State Commander of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, the Honorable Randy Burbage and she will also be Knighted in the Sons of Confederate Veterans Texas Division Mounted Color Guard , Texas Order of Saint George. Would you please have the trees trimmed from around the monument and see that some new grass is planted and that the monuments are cleaned so that I might be able to once again look this young lady in the eye.