LEWISVILLE, Ark. (KSLA) — Part of a highway now stands as a memorial to one of the first Southwest Arkansas soldiers to die in the War on Terror.
Members of his family and the Arkansas Army National Guard recently were at Lewisville, Ark., for the unveiling of a sign honoring the hometown hero.
The marker designates a two-mile stretch of U.S. Highway 82 through Lewisville as the Capt. Arthur “Bo” Felder Memorial Highway.
Capt. Arthur LeJohn “Bo” Felder was commander of the Arkansas Army National Guard’s 39th Infantry Brigade when he was deployed in March 2004 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The father of two was killed in action in a mortar and rocket attack on Camp Cooke in Taji, Iraq, early the morning of April 24, 2004.
Killed in the same attack were three of his fellow soldiers: Chief Warrant Officer 4 Patrick W. Kordsmeier, of North Little Rock; Staff Sgt. Stacey C. Brandon, of Hazen, Ark.; and Staff Sgt. Billy J. Orton, of Humnoke, Ark.
Memorial services for Felder were held in Little Rock, where he was the lead teacher at Pulaski County Step One Alternative Day School, and in his hometown, Lewisville, after his body was returned to Arkansas.
Felder is buried in Arkansas State Veterans Cemetery in North Little Rock.
In December 2004, the name of Pulaski County Learning Academy in Little Rock was changed to Arthur “Bo” Felder Alternative Learning Academy and later to Felder Alternative Learning Academy, according to Little Rock School District.
Felder was a high school junior when he joined the Army.
He enlisted with the Arkansas Army National Guard in August 1986 and, in 1995, graduated as second highest in his class of Officer Candidate School. Last month, Felder was inducted into the school’s Hall of Fame.
Before Iraq, he served with peacekeeping missions in Bosnia and Honduras.
Among the honors Felder earned during his two decades in the Army and Army National Guard are the Purple Heart, the Bronze Star, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal and the Arkansas Distinguished Service Ribbon.