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By Rick Grgetic

It was just a few years ago, in 2006, that ceremonies were held at the Mt. Zion Cemetery in Monroe Township. Clermont County, and every other county in Ohio, was participating in the "Last Veteran" program, which was sponsored nationally by the Sons of the Union Veterans. This group is the direct descendant of the Grand Army of the Republic, or G.A.R., consisting of Civil War veterans, founded in 1866, and ended in 1956.

On May 20th, about 15 family members and 50 people came to the cemetery that sunny afternoon for a ceremony to pay respects to Pvt. Fisher and witness the unveiling of the bronzed tombstone commemorative plaque. James Houston, of the Sons of the Union Veterans, William H. Lytle Camp #10, and officiating host of the events, said there was always painstaking research done to make the claim of last veteran, but the designation requires the soldier to have died and been buried in that county. "It's a matter of recognizing the man's place in history and paying a debt that can never truly be paid, said Donald Darby, Camp Commander.

Leonidas Fisher in fact was born and died in Clermont County. Born 1843 on a farm near Moscow in Monroe Twp., he joined the Union Army at age seventeen. He enlisted in Company B, 59th Ohio Volunteer Infantry, and served until 1864. He saw action in the battles of Shiloh, Corinth, Chickamauga, Chattanooga, and the Atlanta campaign.

Pvt. Fisher's great great great granddaughter Diana Henke said that she was very moved by the ceremony and was pleased that her family could be a part of it. LEONIDAS H. FISHER "This memorial dedication is very important to our family. We sense the historical significance of this ancestor and we are very proud of the legacy that he has left", she said. Thought the War ended in 1865, maybe it's not such a long time ago. Don Fay says of his great-grandfather, "I was alive when he was. When I relate to him, it's not that far away.

Here in honored glory rests the last
Union Civil War Veteran of Clermont County
Leonidas H. Fisher
Pvt., Co.B., 59th Ohio Volunteer Infantry
May there deeds and sacrifices be kept ever green in our memory