General Orders No.11, Washington, D.C., May 5, 1868

Headquarters Grand Army of the Republic

General Orders No.11, WASHINGTON, D.C., May 5, 1868

I. The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet church-yard in the land. In this observance no form of ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit.

We are organized, comrades, as our regulations tell us, for the purpose among other things, “of preserving and strengthening those kind and fraternal feelings which have bound together the soldiers, sailors, and marines who united to suppress the late rebellion.” What can aid more to assure this result than cherishing tenderly the memory of our heroic dead, who made their breasts a barricade between our country and its foes? Their soldier lives were the reveille of freedom to a race in chains, and their deaths the tattoo of rebellious tyranny in arms. We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the nation can add to their adornment and security is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let no wanton foot tread rudely on such hallowed grounds. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic.

If other eyes grow dull, other hands slack, and other hearts cold in the solemn trust, ours shall keep it well as long as the light and warmth of life remain to us.

Let us, then, at the time appointed gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with the choicest flowers of spring-time; let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved from dishonor; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us a sacred charge upon a nation’s gratitude, the soldier’s and sailor’s widow and orphan.

II. It is the purpose of the Commander-in-Chief to inaugurate this observance with the hope that it will be kept up from year to year, while a survivor of the war remains to honor the memory of his departed comrades. He earnestly desires the public press to lend its friendly aid in bringing to the notice of comrades in all parts of the country in time for simultaneous compliance therewith.

III. Department commanders will use efforts to make this order effective.

By order of


Adjutant General


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Jim's picture

Sgt. Allen James Dunckley was born March 8, 1982 and stepped into glory May 14, 2007 due to surprise enemy gunfire. James made a profession of faith when he was just a little boy around 4 years of age. He struggled with security until he went to youth camp at age 16. There he was able to talk with his spiritual mentor and came back with his eternal destiny secured. So much so that he coined the phrase “Ready To Die” which he shortened to RTD. He also chose the number 7 as his favorite number and when asked, “Why?” he responded, “Because it is God’s number.” Later on he designed his own personal logo with the number 7 coupled with the letters “RTD.” He would often say, “I am ready to go to heaven.” Just the Wednesday before he was killed, he expressed the same thing to his dear wife, Jennifer.

He was a patriot and loved his country, and he loved youth and had a real ability to connect with them. His desire was to be a youth minister; but then 9-11 happened. This event disturbed him deeply and he felt he needed to do his part to stop the terrorists. At 19 he joined the Marines and went to war against Iraq in 2003. He was meritoriously promoted four times while in the Marines, attaining the rank of Sergeant within three years. After his return home, he and his wife Jennifer had two children; Joshua now 3, and Hannah, now 2. However, after his discharge from the Marines and with much soul searching and prayer, he believed that God wanted him to reenlist. In February of 2006 he reenlisted with the Army and trained as a paratrooper and then as a sniper. Among the several military awards James received were the Good Conduct Medal for his dedication as a soldier and the Bronze Star Medal for heroic conduct under fire. James’s feelings are best expressed in his own words:

“The one thing I believe in, above all else is love. I love my Savior, my family, my freedom and my friends. Most people view love as a word of emotion, I view love as an act of commitment. My act of love is my service in the military protecting and preserving all the things I believe in most, so that my children, family, and friends can enjoy true freedom. I’ve seen war first hand, and have met people that have never known any of the freedoms we take for granted and I never want that for the people I care for most. Semper-Fi”- Sgt. Allen James Dunckley

His life and testimony touched many; there were over 1,300 people that attended his memorial service and all but about 30 knew him personally. James’ consistent walk with the Lord before those he worked with caused one of his supervisors to give his life to the Lord, and leave his job to attend seminary; he is now a youth pastor himself.

James’ hero was the Biblical David, and like David, James was a warrior, a leader and a man of God. He was not afraid of death because he knew he had eternal life through Jesus Christ. Just as David did, he desired to serve God and was truly a “man after God’s own heart.”


Mark_Smith's picture

Did you know this man? Or perhaps your son? What is your connection, if any, to him?

Jim's picture

The Father, Allen J Dunckley, is a missionary and creation speaker. Years ago when I was a pastor, he and I were in the same fellowship of churches. His wife's name is Mae. Their son and my son (who also was in the USMC) played together at camp (Tri-State in New Jersey). Their son was about 3 months older than mine (my son will be 33 next month). 

The family is a very fine, godly family. 

Jim's picture

June 25, 1979 Cincinnati, OH – August 3, 2005 Barwana, Iraq

Sgt. David K. Kreuter, USMC Reserve, died in Iraq Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2005. He was one of 14 Marines killed in a track vehicle destroyed by a roadside bomb.

A proud member of Lima Company, 3/25 Marines, based in Columbus, Ohio, his promotion to Sergeant was effective July 1, 2005, and announced at his funeral services. On March 25, 2006 he was awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with combat distinguishing “V” for valor. This reflected his overall performance in Iraq as well as two specific battle citations. 

He leaves his wife, Chrystina Kreuter, whom he married Sept. 10, 2004, and son, Christian Oskar Hans Kreuter, born June 14, 2005. David was the brother of Kristin Kreuter and Laura Kreuter, and the son of Pat Murray and Ken Kreuter of Miami Township, Hamilton County.


I dated his mother briefly in High School and I am friends with her and her husband Ken (who was a a couple of years ahead of me in H.S.).

I am in regular contact with Dave's Mother, Pat 

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