Comanche Tribe honors fallen fighters and veterans on Memorial Day

Lawton_The Comanche Indian Veterans Association celebrated veterans past and present on Monday with a tribute at the C-I-V-A Court of Honor.

Three decorated veterans, including the most decorated Comanche woman to serve in the armed forces received plaques for their service to our country.  They were also honored with blankets representing the wars in which they fought.

Lance Corporals Larry Laurenzana and Lewis Chasenah were very touched at the recognition today. "It put a lump in your throat, if you know what I mean, and it's wonderful," Chasenah said.

"I have the silver star, two bronze stars, two purple hearts, and a whole mess of ribbons and campaign ribbons. But that don't really mean that much to me, I'd rather have my partner's back, who served with me," Laurenzana said.

Specialist Four Eleanor McDaniel served in the Gulf War with her husband.  She is the first Comanche woman to serve in combat for the military, but she's not the only woman in her family to fight.

"I didn't really realize that my grandmother was a warrior also.  She served alongside her husband at the Battle of Adobe Walls.  So she fought alongside her husband," McDaniel said.

McDaniel is the most decorated Comanche woman to serve in the armed forces and serves as the first vice-commander in CIVA.

"I feel like it's my duty to do my best to carry on the traditions of the CIVA for the sake of those that have gone on," McDaniel said.

Over 100 people gathered to show honor to these heroes.  There are over 500 Comanche men and women listed among their veterans having served in the armed forces.