The United States Exercise Tiger Foundation will celebrate the opening of its new national office at 1001 E. Walnut Street on Monday.

The event begins at 9 a.m. and will include a ribbon cutting, open house and wreath laying ceremony. 

Two wreaths will be placed. One will honor Sgt. 1st Class Michael James Goble, an Army Green Beret who died in combat Monday in Afghanistan. The other will honor the victims and survivors of the Dec. 6 shooting at a naval base in Pensacola, Florida. Eight people were injured in the attack, in addition to the three killed: Ensign Joshua Kaleb Watson, 23, Airman Mohammed Sameh Haitham, 19, and Airman Apprentice Cameron Scott Walters, 21.

The wreaths will be on display for 24 hours and will be decorated with yellow roses to signify remembrance, foundation Executive Officer Walt Domanski said.

The open house will offer free coffee to the public, and the first 25 to arrive will receive free mugs, according to a Friday news release. Veterans who attend will receive certificates honoring their service. 

Boone County Southern District Commissioner Fred Parry, Northern District Commissioner Janet Thompson and Second Ward City Councilman Mike Trapp will attend, as will John Shikles, policy counselor to Gov. Mike Parson and Ray Bozarth, deputy state director to U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley. Capt. David Dry of the MU Naval ROTC and Maj. Steve Haupt of the MU Army ROTC will place the wreaths.

The United States Exercise Tiger Foundation is a national organization that works "to provide, coordinate, and develop annual ceremonies honoring veterans, active military, students, citizens and communities deserving recognition for their patriotic or positive actions affecting US society," according to its website.

The foundation, which organized in 1989, is named after Operation Tiger, an April 28, 1944, dress rehearsal for the D-Day landings of World War II in which 946 U.S. troops lost their lives in southwestern England.

Domanski said the new headquarters is "a milestone for us."

"It's an incredible building for us to have our national office in."

  • Assistant Director of Photography at the Columbia Missourian. Reach me at tjrggf@mail.missouri.edu, tristenrousephoto@gmail.com, or on Instagram @tristen_thejournalist.

Recommended for you