MAIZE, Kan. Ahead of its 2018 football season opener against Valley Center Friday, Maize High School gave deserved fanfare to a 1951 Eagle grad who went on to serve his country in the Korean War.
Sgt. Leland Alexander graduated from Maize before being drafted during the Korean War. He supports his alma mater, still wearing his letterman's sweater from more than 67 years ago.
At Maize High School, Alexander was a four-year letter winner in track and field, basketball and as a member of the school's then six-man football team.
"Of course, you take six-man football, you didn't have to have too many guys," Alexander says.
This year, Alexander received a special honor for his contributions to his country after high school. He flew to Washington, D.C. on an Honor Flight and visited monuments dedicated to him and thousands of fellow veterans.
"It means a great deal to travel to Washington, D.C. and go to Arlington Cemetery and to see all of the soldiers that gave their life for this country," he says.
Alexander and his wife, Shirley, have lived in Maize since he returned home from the war. Their three sons each went to Maize and played football for the Eagles under the Friday night lights.