The chairwoman of the state Veterans Affairs committee plans to name an area bridge after a local war hero who fought in three major wars of the 20th century.

Pending approval of the state senate, a sign will be placed on the Church Street Bridge in honor of Brigadier General Richard J. Tallman, who lost his life in Vietnam in 1972.


The chairwoman of the state Veterans Affairs committee plans to name an area bridge after a local war hero who fought in three major wars of the 20th century.
Pending approval of the state senate, a sign will be placed on the Church Street Bridge in honor of Brigadier General Richard J. Tallman, who lost his life in Vietnam in 1972.
State Sen. Lisa Baker (R) said honoring a local hero by naming a bridge for him or her is common.
“It’s a tradition worth keeping,” said Baker, who chairs the Veterans Affairs committee for the state senate in Harrisburg. The bridge dedication will take place sometime next year after Legislature approves Baker's bill.
Tallman was born in Honesdale in 1925. He grew up on a farm outside of White Mills, and later lived in Honesdale. He graduated from Honesdale High School in 1943.
Tallman was drafted by the U.S. Army and sent to fight in the European Theater.
He was a machine gunner in the Battle of the Bulge.
Tallman once remarked that his camping and hunting skills he learned while growing up on the farm helped him survive the harsh environment of the Ardennes.
Commissioner Brian Smith said the values he learned on a farm, like many Wayne County residents, are something to cherish.
“That’s a thing we could be proud of,” he said. “These values that were instilled upon us.”
After serving in W.W.II, Tallman was appointed as a Cadet at West Point Military Academy, from where he graduated in 1949, specializing in infantry.
Shortly after graduation, he married his high school sweetheart, Evelyn Phillips, of Honesdale.
He fought in the Korean War as a 1st Lieutenant.
Tallman earned the rank of Lt. Colonel and the Colonel during his three tours in Vietnam.
After receiving the rank of Brigadier General in 1972, Tallman was sent to Vietnam for his fourth tour.
He was killed in action during the Battle of An Loc on July 9th, 1972. He was laid to rest at the Old Chapel cemetery at West Point. He was the last General Officer to die in the Vietnam War.
He was survived by his wife and seven children, two of which graduated from West Point. Today, eleven of his grandchildren serve in the U.S. Armed Forces.
Joe McGraw, of Lake Ariel, said he came up with the idea to name the bridge for Tallman, after he saw his head stone on a West Point flyer.
McGraw recognized the name Tallman as a common Wayne County name. His great aunt said she had Tallman in school, and another family member attended high school with Tallman’s son.
“This man should be honored after giving his life,” McGraw said.