Thursday, January 3, 2002

Funeral services for
‘the General’ to be on
Saturday in Army chapel

A fund has been set up for family
members and to feed needy veterans

By Lisa Asato

Funeral services have been set for 9 a.m. Saturday for John H. Rogers Jr., known as "the General," who waved flags at morning commuters to bring attention to veterans' benefits.

A memorial fund has been set up in Rogers' name to help family members pay for an estimated $4,000 in travel expenses to bring kin here for the service Saturday, which would have been his 56th birthday. The fund would also help maintain services at BRAVO Hawaii, the nonprofit group for veterans, of which Rogers was president, said Will Haynes, a colonel in BRAVO Hawaii who established the fund along with BRAVO Col. Arthur Bennett and Dr. Tina Chu.

"The main focus is to see to it that veterans are never left hungry on Sunday," said Haynes.

Rogers, a Vietnam veteran, had used his retirement money to help the nonprofit group feed homeless veterans every Sunday at Fort DeRussy Beach Park, Haynes said. Those veterans have donated "everything from pennies, nickels, dimes and dollars" to the fund, which has collected a little more than $100, Haynes said.

Rogers died Dec. 22 on the corner of Kapiolani Boulevard and Kalakaua Avenue, where he waved the flag in support of veterans.

Ava Hilliard, Rogers' sister, said the fund was established with the family's approval and that a family member will help BRAVO Hawaii administer the fund. She said donations may be earmarked for the family or BRAVO Hawaii.

"Everything he stood for with the homeless and veterans, we stand with him. As patriotic as he was, we want to see that continue," said Hilliard, who added that the five family members who made the trip for Saturday's services were overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from those who knew Rogers.

The family plans yearly trips to Hawaii to continue the flag-waving tradition started by Rogers, she said.

Tomorrow, Rogers' daughter, Gloria Rogers, and his brother, the Rev. Thomas Rogers, plan to wave flags at the same corner "the General" had for nearly four years.

Funeral visitation starts at 9 a.m. Saturday at the Fort DeRussy Chapel, across from the Hale Koa Hotel on Kalia Road. Services will follow from noon to 1:30 p.m.

Rogers will be buried at 10 a.m. Monday at the Hawaii State Veterans Cemetery in Kaneohe. The retired master sergeant with the U.S. Army will be buried with full military honors, including a 21-gun salute. The family requests casual attire and that flowers be limited to Monday only.

Donations to the General John H. Rogers Jr. Memorial Fund may be made at any branch of American Savings Bank or may be sent to P.O. Box 8802, Honolulu 96830.

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