Covington's Oakley Farris Inducted to Kentucky Veterans Hall of Fame
He couldn't attend the official Kentucky Veterans Hall of Fame induction ceremony in September, so the ceremony came to Oakley Farris on Tuesday night.
As the Kenton County Fiscal Court meeting got underway, there was singing of "God Bless America" and "God Bless the USA", a playing of "Taps" by Sheriff Chuck Korzenborn, the waving of flags by those in attendance, and other accoutrements of patriotism.
Farris's service during World War II was outlined during the presentation in which he received a pin, medal, and other honors.
For his part, Farris said that he was sorry that his wife Eva could not attend Tuesday night.
"It is because of my wife that I am here," he said. "When we first married, she came from a prominent social family in Havana, Cuba, and I came from a little place called Gray, Kentucky. What a hillbilly I was!
"My best deal was when I convinced that woman to be my wife because she convinced me that I could do anything I want to do and believe me, she was right."
Northern Kentucky members of the 2017 Kentucky Veterans Hall of Fame inductees are:
- Staff Sgt. Carroll Ewing, Florence
- Cpl. Oakley Farris, Covington
- Sgt. Donald McMillian, Walton
- Lt. Col. Arthur Turner, Bellevue
- Petty Officer 3rd Class Steven Weber, Alexandria
For more information and to nominate a Kentucky veteran to the Hall of Fame, visit kyveterans.org.
Since their marriage, the Farrises owned dozens of rental properties throughout Covington and have become two of Northern Kentucky's most prolific philanthropists, with their names adorning many buildings and, more importantly, many checks to charitable causes.
"I am not patting Oaklet on the back," Farris said of himself. "Look around Northern Kentucky and you can see what my wife is responsible for through me."
Though he could not attend the formal event in September, Farris was grateful for the showing of support on Tuesday, and even made a joke about it.
"I was told the night of, they have the colors and the bagpipes, and did I hear someone say, they were going to play Taps?," he said. "The only thing I could think of, they were practicing for my final exit."
Korzenborn and Bradford Queen, representing the Kentucky Secretary of State's office, flanked Farris as he was decorated with his new honors.
"This is America at its best," Farris said to the crowd of friends and local leaders. "Think about how grateful all of us should be because we are in America."