Father of Local Guardsman

Presents Hand-carved Sign

 for Fort Douglas Recruiting Office

 

Written by Maj. Hank McIntire

Published June 22, 2005

   

Lt. Col. Jefferson Burton accepts the new recruiting sign from Hal Hardcastle as son Sgt. 1st Class Brett Hardcastle looks on.

Photo by Maj. Hank McIntire

Lt. Col. Jefferson Burton accepts the new

recruiting sign from Hal Hardcastle as son

Sgt. 1st Class Brett Hardcastle looks on.

 

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah National Guard officially accepted a hand-carved wooden recruiting sign June 11 from Hal Hardcastle, father of Guard recruiter Sgt. 1st Class Brett Hardcastle, at the Fort Douglas Museum in Salt Lake City.

 

A retired teacher, coach, and sergeant major with 27 years of service with the Army Reserve’s 96th Regional Readiness Command, the senior Hardcastle took up wood carving after he retired in 1977.

 

Hardcastle started out by making simple wooden Christmas plaques for family and friends and now carves a wide variety of decorative pieces with an extraordinary amount of detail.

 

When asked about the reasons for doing the carving, Hardcastle smiled with gratitude and pride.

 

“All my boys have served in the military. I wanted to do something to help my son the recruiter,” he said. “The more I worked on this project the prouder I got for what it represented.”

 

“I’ve always looked for opportunities to better myself, and this was a chance to do something to pay something back,” Hardcastle added.

 

Son Brett appreciates his dad’s two-month effort to cut, carve, glue and paint the basswood sign featuring the well-known image of James Montgomery Flagg’s Uncle Sam with ‘I Want You’ on one side and ‘Utah Army National Guard Recruiting Station’ on the other.

Hal Hardcastle and his family pose with the new sign that hangs above the Utah Guard’s Fort Douglas recruiting office.

Photo by Maj. Hank McIntire

Hal Hardcastle and his family pose with the new sign that hangs above the Utah Guard’s Fort Douglas recruiting office.

 

“It’s a legacy of my father and his woodcarving ability. He would have done this for anybody, but the fact that he did it for me makes it doubly special,” he said.

 

Hardcastle’s sons entered the sign on his behalf in the Utah Woodcarvers Show earlier this year, and the piece won first place in the open category.

 

Lt. Col. Jefferson Burton, Director of Civil-Military Relations for the Utah National Guard, accepted the sign on the Guard’s behalf.

 

“We say thanks to Hal for this gift and his service. We will display this sign proudly,” he said.

 

The presentation coincided with Army Day, a celebration of the 230th anniversary of Army, sponsored by the Fort Douglas Military Museum and the U.S. Army Reserve’s 96th Regional Readiness Command.

 

Hardcastle was joined at the ceremony by his wife, children and their spouses. He was pleased to be a part of the celebration of the Army’s birthday.

 

“I’m here with the family I created, and my other family is the Army. And I’m proud to be a member of both,” he said.

 

 

One side of Hal Hardcastle’s hand-carved recruiting sign.

Photo by Maj. Hank McIntire

One side of Hal Hardcastle’s hand-carved recruiting sign.

The reverse side of the recruiting sign.

Photo by Maj. Hank McIntire

The reverse side of the recruiting sign.