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Curtis Emmett Lowe Memorial Bridge Dedication

August 4, 2013

CHAPMANVILLE — The Curtis Emmett Lowe Memorial Bridge Dedication was held Friday, July 19, 2013 with approximately 50 people attended including family, friends and House of Delegate Representative Rupert “Rupie” Phillips Jr. who proposed resolution HCR-15 to the WV Legislature along with Delegate Ted Tomblin.


The Resolution read:


“Requesting the Division of Highways to name the bridge on Route 119, in Chapmanville, Logan County, at Garrett Fork, bridge number 23-7-0.33, as the “Navy Chief Boatswain’s Mate Curtis Emmett Lowe Memorial Bridge”.


“Whereas, Curtis Emmett Lowe was a resident of Chapmanville, Logan County, West Virginia; and


“Whereas, Curtis Emmett Lowe was born January 18, 1918, at Wheatley Branch, West Virginia to Joseph and Susan Scragg Lowe, the youngest of four children. Both parents died before he was nine years old and he was raised by his grandmother and later an aunt and uncle. Curtis Emmett Lowe died on April 3, 2013; and


“Whereas, Curtis Emmett Lowe enlisted in the United States Navy at the age of eighteen on April 13, 1937. He served on the U.S.S. Philadelphia for three and a half years. During that service, President Franklin D. Roosevelt boarded the U.S.S. Philadelphia at Charleston, South Carolina for a fishing trip to the Turks Island in the Caribbean. The president was on the ship for a week and was returned to South Carolina. During this week, the Philadelphia provided emergency medical attention to a sailor on a Norwegian ship, for which the Philadelphia and President received a thank you from the King of Norway. Curtis Emmet Lowe received his discharge on April 25, 1941, in San Diego, California, having served in Hawaii. He returned home after his sister died and while living on Godly Branch he heard about the Japanese attach on Pearl Harbor. He reenlisted in the Navy in July 1942 and shortly thereafter received a draft notice. He was initially stationed in New York City where he was joined by his wife and son. Then he served on the U.S.S. Elizabeth Stanton which had been converted from a cargo ship to a troop transport. He was sent to North Africa for the Morocco Landing on November 8 through 11, 1942. He participated in the Sicilian occupation July 9 through 15, 1943 and the Salerno Landing in Southern Italy September 9 through 21, 1943. He returned to the United States for a brief stay and then took a convoy of sailors and equipment to Scotland; and


“Whereas, Curtis Emmett Lowe was on the LST 1008 on the island of Saipan when WW II ended. He was subsequently honorably discharged on October 5, 1945 with the rank of Chief Boatswain’s Mate. Curtis Emmett Lowe married Norma Frye on June 1, 1953. They had two children, Joseph Andrew Lowe, now deceased, and Phyllis L. Lowe. He had two sons, Curtis E., Jr. and Kenneth, now deceased, with his first wife, Gertie Stilner; and


“Whereas, It is fitting to honor Curtis Emmet Lowe by naming the bridge at Garrett Fork for Curtis Emmett Lowe; therefore, be it


“Resolved by the Legislature of West Virginia:


“That the Legislature hereby requests the Division of Highways to name the bridge the bridge on Route 119, in Chapmanville, Logan County, at Garrett Fork, bridge number 23-7-0.33, as the “Navy Chief Boatswain’s Mate Emmett Lowe Memorial”; and, be it


“Further Resolved, That the Division of Highways is hereby requested to have made and be placed signs identifying the bridge as the “Navy Chief Boatswain’s Mate Curtis Emmet Lowe Bridge”…”


Also attending were Senators Ron Stollings and Art Kirkendall; Logan County Sheriff Sonya Dingess Porter; Danny Godby, and Madison Mayor Sonny Howell, along with Doug Bell and Tilden Bell, Boone County Board of Health members. A special guest in attendance was Norma Jean Phelps of Owings, Md., niece of Curtis Lowe, and a special friend to Mr. Lowe, Gary Bell.


The Chapmanville VFW performed a 21-Gun Salute along with the playing of “Taps,” which was followed by the release of red, white and blue balloons. Afterwards, both signs in the north and south bound lanes of Corridor G were unveiled by Delegate Phillips and Senator Stollings.