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Two historical grave monuments restored at final resting spot

On a recent cold November morning, members of the John M. Jordan Camp 58, Sons of Confederate Veterans Historical Honor Society joined forces with several concerned citizens of the Rodgers Chapel community to restore two historically significant government issued grave markers. 

The grave markers were that of Thomas Wood, a Revolutionary War veteran, circa 1753 to 1824, and his grandson, Thomas William Wood, a veteran of the War Between the States, who died June 20, 1864 in the Military Hospital in Petersburg.  

Thomas Wood served with the Virginia Militia, and Thomas William Wood served with Co. F, 34th Virginia, CSA.

In November of 1998, Glen Harvey of Roanoke and his cousin, Edward Bracket, of Powhatan attempted to visit the grave sight of their third great-grandfather and great-grand uncle on State Route 607.  

According to Sons of Confederate Veterans Camp Commander Bill Crews, they knew the grave stones were there, but the two men covered practically every inch of the area until the stones were finally located.  The gravestones were found lying flat, side-by-side, covered with vegetation.  

It appeared to Harvey and Bracket the stones had been moved when the area was logged several years earlier.

It was the desire of these two men that the historically significant monuments not be lost, Crews said.  

In May of this year, the two descendents contacted the local camp of Sons of Confederate Veterans.  

Crews said he began investigating the sight and was able to locate neighbors who had personal knowledge of the stones’ original locations.  

Ricky Bowman lived on the property as a child and was instrumental in identifying where the stones were originally set.

On Nov. 14, Sons of Confederate Veterans members Bill Crews, Boyd Archer, Larwence Woosley and H.L. Crews, together with community residents Ricky Bowman and Lester Dodd recovered the government issued grave monuments and returned them to the proper location. 

The volunteers set the stones in a cement foundation and trust the final resting place of these two veterans will be respected for generations to come, Crews said.