LAWTON, Okla. (TNN) - The Comanche Nation Veterans France Delegation held their final meeting Thursday before they head to France.
This group will head to France to honor Comanche’s who stormed Utah Beach 75 years ago, and visit the graves of soldiers still buried there. The meeting was held in the Patriot room, designed to show off their history, especially the Comanche Code Talkers.
Two members heading off to France have a special reason to take this trip, both of their dads were Comanche Code Talkers.
“He didn’t talk about it. Like most of our dads they were told not to,” said George RedElk.
“I did not know my dad did those type of duties, all we knew was that daddy was a radio operator. He spoke nothing of what he did in the Army because he was sworn to secrecy," said Nona Mihecoby.
Their fathers were two of more than 200 Comanche soldiers. While they survived WW2, this group will have the chance to visit the graves of four Comanche Soldiers who died in France and are still buried there.
“We’re going to commemorate, and have a special ceremony with the French Government to commemorate the landing of 14 Comanche Code Talkers on Utah Beach,” said Comanche Historian Lanny Aspermy.
They will leave medals and a plaque on each gravesite.
Nona Mihecoby has visited Utah Beach before, and she said the experience was something she will never forget.
“It was the first time I saw where my daddy landed, right on Utah Beach. It was so reverent, you could almost hear it,” said Mihecoby
George RedElk followed in the footsteps of his father by serving during Vietnam. He said the trips to France give them a special chance to honor their relatives, and fellow Comanches in ways they cant do here in Oklahoma.
“The French people knew all about the code talkers. They knew how many lives they saved, and they really made us feel good honoring our dads like that,” said RedElk.
This trip to France, and the whole Comanche Nation Complex itself is designed to keep the Comanche Code Talkers history alive.
“There are people even today who didn’t know we had Comanche Code Talkers,” said RedElk.
“They are gone, but that history will never be forgotten. ANd the only way younger generations are going to know is through us," said Mihecoby.
The group leaves for France at he beginning of June, and will be staying with French Families in the small town of Chilly. They expect a packed crowd of visitors from all over the world, and will have the chance to perform Comanche Tribe dances and ceremonies.