A ceremony will be Sunday, Sept. 9, at the Bennett, Iowa, American Legion Post to dedicate four signs designating a portion of Iowa Highway 130 as a memorial for a Vietnam veteran from Bennett.
Army Spec. 5 Gary Hein died on Dec. 6, 1969, after a mortar round intended for the enemy misfired and hit him as he was sleeping in his bunk in Plieku, a city in central Vietnam.
Through the years, as Hein's high school classmates met at reunions, a feeling grew that they should do something to honor Hein's life and service.
Wes Moeller, president of the class of 1966, decided a fitting tribute would be to designate the 35 miles of Iowa 130 between Tipton and Davenport as the Spec. 5 Gary L. Hein Memorial Parkway.
Classmates raised $2,570 to pay for four signs and their installation, which will be done by the Iowa Department of Transportation soon after the service, Moeller said.
A portion of the money raised has been placed into a fund that will go toward any future sign repair or replacement, he said.
Doors at the Legion hall at 242 Main St. will open at 4 p.m. on Sunday, followed by the ceremony at 5 p.m. that will begin with the posting of the colors.
Retired U.S. Army Lt. Col. Stephen Garrington will speak, and Moeller and members of the Hein family, including brother Dale, who also served in the Army during the Vietnam War, will unveil the brown and white signs.
The ceremony will conclude with a prayer and the sounding of Taps.