Marine Corps League to honor 50th anniversary of Bartlett hero’s death

Sgt. Walter K. Singleton
Sgt. Walter K. Singleton

The Sgt Walter K. Singleton Detachment #476 Marine Corps League will host a special remembrance ceremony on the 50th anniversary of when Singleton died. The St. Walter K. Singleton Memorial Day will be at 11 a.m. March 25 at Veterans Park in Bartlett. The park is adjacent to W.J. Freeman Park at the corner of Bartlett Boulevard and Bartlett Road.

Singleton, born in December 1944, was a U.S. Marine sergeant who received the Medal of Honor posthumously for heroism during the Vietnam War. He graduated from Bartlett High School in June 1963 and enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve that August. He entered the regular Marine Corps the next September. He died in an intense enemy engagement on March 24, 1967, when he left a relatively safe position in the rear of his company to move wounded away from the enemy’s kill zone. Before he died, he also killed eight of the enemy and drove the rest away.

In addition to the Marine Corps League that bears his name, several Mid-South locations are named in his honor, including:

  • Sgt. Walter K. Singleton Parkway, which runs from Memphis to the Navy base in Millington
  • Singleton Hall, a barracks on the Marine Corps base at Quantico, Va.
  • Singleton Community Center in Bartlett
  • Sgt. Walter K. Singleton Park on Castleman Street in Memphis

Events at his 50th memorial day will include:

  • Posting of the colors by Detachment 476
  • Pledge of Allegiance led by Detachment 476
  • National Anthem (“The Star Spangled Banner”)
  • Memorial wreath laying by Detachment 476
  • Invocation by the chaplain for Detachment 476
  • Welcome and comments
  • Military music medley by the SWKS Pipes/Drum Band
  • Introduction of speaker
  • Speaker Master Sgt. Jim Brown, USMC Ret.
  • Rifle salute by Detachment 476
  • Playing of “Taps” by Detachment 476
  • Flag folding ceremony by Detachment 476
  • Benediction
  • Retiring of the Colors by Detachment 476
  • Performance of “Amazing Grace” by the SWKS Pipes/Drum Band

Written by Carolyn Bahm, Express editor. Contact her at (901) 433-9138, or