Marquette County renames center after late veteran

This is a recording of the TV6 Late News.
Published: Dec. 2, 2022 at 6:14 PM EST
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ISHPEMING, Mich. (WLUC) - The Marquette County Department of Veteran Affairs is renaming its facility after a late veteran.

A dedication was held Friday afternoon at the Veterans Affairs office. The facility is now named the Col. George T. LaBlonde Jr. Veterans Service Center. LaBlonde’s son George LaBlonde, III said the dedication is fitting.

“He’s been trying to take care of soldiers from day one and all through my life. He told me take care of soldiers, they’ll take care of you. So you know, we just continue with the efforts of the department to continue to take care of veterans in the community in Marquette County,” LaBlonde, III said.

LaBlonde Jr. served in the U.S. Army with the Engineering Battalion and did tours in South Vietnam. He received many awards for his service like a Bronze Star Medal and the Legion of Merit Medal. LaBlonde III said his father would have enjoyed the festivities.

“He was pretty humble, but he would have really enjoyed it. He would more so enjoyed talking to all the people that came out to see him,” he said.

The Marquette County Department of Veteran Affairs Director Rachel Woody said it was a smooth process to get the name changed.

“When the suggestion was brought forth to the county administrator, he was behind it 100%. They took it to our county commissioners, and they also agreed and there were no hiccups. It was smooth,” Woody said.

LaBlonde Jr’s wife Sharon LaBlonde said it was nice to see everyone who came out on Friday.

“It’s just been wonderful and it is overwhelming. We are so proud as a family and I just wish my husband was here to see this,” Sharon LaBlonde said.

After the dedication, a small after-party with snacks and cake was available to attendees.