Freedom Isn’t Free

“All gave some – some gave all.”
-Howard William Osterkamp, Korean War Veteran, Purple Heart Recipient


You hear people repeat all the time, “freedom isn’t free.” While it is certainly true, many times it slips off the tongue too easily. To be able to connect a name, a person, a classmate, a period in time to the cost of our freedom helps make an indelible impact and keeps front and center the idea that indeed “freedom isn’t free”. The community of Lisle, Illinois has not been untouched by this cost of freedom. In an effort to honor the lives and memories of Lisle Senior High School alumni who have given their lives in the service and protection of our country, a memorial wall was recently installed just inside the main entrance of the campus.


Memorial installed in Lisle Senior High School honoring 5 alumni who gave their lives in service to our country. The 5 name plates are made of cast acrylic with gold stand-offs. The dedication plate is a bronze casting.


While we are reminded on a daily basis of the sacrifices of our fellow countrymen, it often feels distant and difficult to truly understand these losses. Giving theses soldiers and former classmates a “face” brings very close to home the fact that, while what we often see on TV and in the news is many miles away, there are local people involved. These individuals were neighbors, friends, brothers, and sons that believed in the foundation of our country and committed their lives to protecting those ideals.


We at B. Gunther & Company believe that creating a physical memorial is a respectful and impactful way to give an identity to those it is meant to honor. Helping produce and install a memorial always touches an emotional nerve for us; a memorial to fallen heroes that gave their lives for our freedom and to keep us safe is profound and provides a compelling reason to pause, give respect, recognition and thanks for their sacrifice.  We are blessed and privileged to play a small part in this endeavor of recognizing the heroes among us and we proudly stand with a community that understands that they should never be forgotten.


The 5 servicemen honored by this memorial:

Robert Arlon: Class of 1964 – Specialist, U.S. Army – Wounded in Action, Vietnam – 1971

Ryan D. Burris: Class of 2009 – Petty Officer 3rd Class, U.S. Navy – Killed in Action, Abu Dahbi, United Arab Emerites – May 21, 2015

Sean T. Cardelli: Class of 2004 – Private 1st Class, U.S. Marines – Killed in Action, Fallujah, Iraq – February 1, 2006

Steven R. Ford: Class of 1963 – Private 1st Class, U.S. Army – Killed in Action, Behn Duong Province, Vietnam – September 11, 1964

David F. Garringer: Class of 1964 – 1st Lieutenant, U.S. Marines – Recipient of the Silver Star – Killed in Action, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam – November 24, 1968


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