CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- The hard work of a Midlothian mother and daughter will be recognized on Veteran’s Day when Midlothian High School will dedicate a war memorial they created that honors graduate Charles A Ransom, who died while serving his country.
Cammie Olson’s dad would have been 74 on Tuesday, November 10, but he was killed while fighting in Vietnam 50 years ago when she was a baby.
“It was just a complete ambush,” Olson said.
In the years after he died, Olson said she came to understand the significance of memorials to the families of those who died while serving their country.
“The things to memorialize him were so important to my grandparents,” Olson said.
Olson instilled that patriotism in her daughter, Stephanie, who two years ago, while a junior at Midlothian High School, started a project with her mom to memorialize all Midlothian graduates who died at war.
“She just loved the idea,” Olson said.
The Olsons cross-referenced a Midlothian alumni book with the names of soldiers from Chesterfield at the Virginia War Memorial, and found one Midlothian graduate who died in a military conflict.
“It was just Charles,” Olson said.
Charles A. Ransom graduated from Midlothian High in 1997, and died in April of 2011 in Afghanistan.
“I want the school, I want all the students, to know about Charles and what he did,” Olson said.
“Six pilots and three cyber personnel from Langley air force base were killed that day,” Ransom’s father, Willie Ransom, said.
Willie Ransom said he misses his son every day. “He was an inspiration to me and lots more people,” Ransom said.
Ransom said the memorial, which was funded through donations on a GoFundMe account, means the world to him.
“Words cannot express it. I am just so thankful,” Ransom said.
The memorial dedication is Wednesday at 11 a.m. at Midlothian High Schoool.