All of these heroes, however, share the same final resting place—the San Marcos Cemetery—and their stories will be told from 3-5 p.m. Oct. 27 at “If the Dead Could Talk,” sponsored by the Heritage Association of San Marcos and the Friends of the San Marcos Cemetery.
The self-paced Cemetery Walk will take participants to the gravesites of more than a dozen men and women who served their countries in the military. Drama students from San Marcos High School will portray each of the honored dead at their gravesites, sharing biographical information about them through monologues.
Tickets are now on sale for $10 (adults) or $5 (students). Children 12 and under will be admitted free of charge. Among the veterans to be recognized during the Cemetery Walk are the first San Marcos natives killed in action in World War I, Maurice T. Suttles, and in World War II, Arthur Edward Gary.
Others honored on the walk who were killed in action are Jack Arnold, one of six former students at Southwest Texas Normal School who died during World War I, and Vicente Gonzalez, who was killed in action in South Vietnam.
The walk will also feature the stories of three British Royal Air Force pilots buried at the City Cemetery. They were killed in 1952 and 1953 while training near San Marcos. Former San Marcos mayor and Southwest Texas State University professor Emmie Craddock, who was a WAVE during World War II, is the only female veteran featured on the walk. Other World War II veterans profiled on the walk will be Joe Valdez Vasquez Jr., a revered leader in the San Marcos Hispanic community; Thomas P. Yoakum , a beloved San Marcos High School civics teacher; and J.C. “Jake” Sullivan, who served 17 years as Postmaster of San Marcos.
Among the oldest graves visited during the walk are those of Dr. Peter Cavanaugh Woods, a medical doctor who served as colonel of the 32nd Texas Cavalry in the Civil War, and his father in law, Louis Lawshe, who saw action in four different wars during his lifetime.
The stories of Spanish American War veterans Henry William Munson and James P. Caldwell will also be told at the gravesite of Ann Pearce Munson Caldwell, widow of both men. Proceeds from the Cemetery Walk, sponsored jointly by the Friends of the San Marcos Cemetery and the Heritage Association of San Marcos, will fund improvements to the cemetery’s historic chapel.
Tickets are available at the Chamber of Commerce office (202 North C.M. Allen Parkway) or by calling Nancy Scott at (512)392-3552. Tickets will also be available at the gate on the day of the event.
Additional information on the event will be posted on both organizations’ websites:
www.sanmarcoscemetery.org and www.heritagesanmarcos.org. For general information, call (512) 353-1943.
Caption: One of the gravesites on the Oct. 27 Cemetery Walk is that of Dr. Peter C. Woods, a medical doctor and colonel in the 32nd Texas Cavalry during the Civil War. Proceeds from the Cemetery Walk will fund improvements to the cemetery’s historic chapel, located just up the road from where Woods is buried.