>La Grande Observer | Union and Wallowa Counties' News Leader

Observer news NE Oregon Classifieds Web
web powered by Web Search Powered by Google

Follow LaGrandeObserver.com

La Grande Observer print edition

view all La Grande Observer print publications »

La Grande Observer Daily Paper 07/28/14

The LaGrande Observer is now online in a Replica E-edition form and publishes Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Current subscribers have full access to the E-edition.

View Paper

If you are not a current subscriber, subscribe today for immediate access.


Recent article comments

Powered by Disqus

Home arrow News arrow Local News arrow SALUTE



By Dick Mason

Observer Staff Writer

One of Northeast Oregons most dedicated National Guardsmen received a lifetime salute Saturday.

Col. Jim Bovard of Union, who is retiring, was honored at a changing of the guard ceremony at La Grandes National Guard Armory. Bovard has been the commander of the Oregon National Guards 8th Battalion Defense Force since 1994.

Maj. John R. Richardson of Pendleton was named the new commander of the battalion on Saturday. Richardson is in his eighth year with the battalion.

The state defense force fills in when members of the regular National Guard unit are called out for things such as overseas missions. The 8th Battalion State Defense Force is responsible for filling in for National Guard units in La Grande, Hermiston, Burns, Pendleton, Milton-Freewater, Ontario and Baker City.

Bovard has been with the State Defense Force since 1970 and commander of the 8th Battalion since it was formed about eight years ago.

Whenever I think of James Bovard I think of community service, said Maj. Dan McCabe of the 3rd Battalion, 116th Cavalry.

Bovard said that the friendships he has made while serving in the National Guard are incomparable.

The men of my battalion have always stood behind me. They have meant as much to me as my own family, Bovard said.

Bovard has served a total of 35 years in the military. During World War II he served in the Coast Guard, working on a convoy which conducted anti-submarine patrols and escorted troop and cargo ships.

He is the kind of person we need in America. A person who is willing to give time to serve, McCabe said. He is a husband, father, volunteer and patriot.

Bovard was promoted from lieutenant colonel to full colonel at Saturdays ceremony. He also received the National Guards prestigious Exceptional Service Medal and the 3rd Battalion, 116th Cavalrys Cavalry Man award.

This is a lot more than I expected, said Bovard, who said the ceremony was an emotional one for him.

Richardson has been with the 8th Battalion State Defense Force since 1994. He has been in the military a total of 15 years. He was a combat engineer in the Army during World War II.

Richardson said that serving under Bovard has refreshed his memory.

What Id learned in World War II Id forgotten, but I learned it again from Col. Bovard, Richardson said.

Bovard said that the 8th Battalion State Defense Force will be in good hands under Richard- son.

He is a very loyal, hard-working man with a high level of integrity and dependability, Bovard said.

Bovards is a familiar face in Union County not just because of his involvement with the National Guard. He is a member of the Blue Mountain Barbershoppers and is an artist.

One of his paintings is displayed at the Union Family Health Center. He plans to remain active with the barbershop chorus and as an artist.

blog comments powered by Disqus
Local / Sports / Business / State / National / Obituaries / Public Notices
Editorials / Letters / Guest Columns / Columnists
Outdoors / Ag / Spiritual / Go Magazine / Portraits
View all classifieds / Jobs / Autos / Real Estate / Rentals / Place an Ad
The Observer
About / Contact / Commercial Printing / Subscriptions / Terms of Use / Site Map
Also Online
Photo Reprints / Slideshows / Weather and Valley Cam / /index.php?option=com_rss&feed=RSS2.0&no_html=1">RSS Feed ?> RSS Feed

Follow La Grande Observer headlines on Follow La Grande Observer headlines on Twitter

© Copyright 2001 - 2014 Western Communications, Inc. All rights reserved. By Using this site you agree to our Terms of Use