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Bridge dedicated to Sgt. Green
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Fallen Vietnam War veteran Staff Sgt. Wilburn Leon Green had Shellsford Bridge named in his memory. Pictured next to the sign are his cousin Larry Pack, and his sister Brenda Ann McMillen. - photo by Bethany Porter
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Wilbur Green

The Shellsford Bridge is now called the SSG Wilburn Leon Green Memorial Bridge.

A dedication ceremony was held Wednesday to honor Sgt. Wilburn Green’s memory and rename the bridge. 

Last December, his cousin Larry Pack went to the county Highway and Bridge Committee and requested the bridge be named after Green. Pack said he had been trying to get something in memory of his cousin for 52 years and on Wednesday it finally happened. 

“This is probably the most satisfying thing I have been able to do as part of the commission. We are here today to honor Wilburn Leon Green who gave his life in Vietnam,” said Commissioner Brad Hillis. “I can’t imagine what it is like to be a member of a family and get that information that they aren’t coming home. Mr. Green served four tours in Vietnam and Mr. Pack told me that he lacked three days before coming home when he died. I don’t think we, as a state or a county, can do anything more honorable than recognizing the vets who gave their lives.”

Green was born April 23, 1945 and was killed in action on May 8, 1969. He was a resident of Warren County and attended church in the Shellsford area and is buried at Shellsford Cemetery. 

He enlisted in the United States Army and began his tour of Vietnam on Feb. 19, 1968. Green had the rank of Staff Sergeant and his military occupation or specialty was Infantry Indirect Fire Crewman. 

The commendations he received for his service include: Purple Heart, Combat Infantryman Badge, Marksmanship Badge, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Army Presidential Unit Citation, Vietnam Gallantry Cross, and Army Good Conduct Medal. Green is also honored on the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial in Washington, D.C.

County Executive Jimmy Haley said he remembers Green and remembers when he passed and is glad they were able to name the bridge in his memory. 

“Deaths are never easy to accept even after all these years, but this is a way to recognize a fallen hero that we can all be proud of,” said Haley.

Many family members were at the dedication including Pack, his sister Brenda Ann McMillen, nephew David Holt, multiple cousins and other relatives. The family is appreciative. 

“The family is just thankful y’all have done all of this. We appreciate it,” said Holt. 

The bridge is located on Highway 127 over Collins River.