Michael Beach loves telling stories. But public speaking isn’t really his thing.
“I literally do not like talking in front of people, even though I’m a teacher. Again, it’s just one of those things, where I like telling the story," said Beach, a Maysville resident.
Michael is a glutton for punishment. This is a regular occurrence for him because he has some stories to tell.
News 9 has featured this Navy vet before.
It was eleven years ago that Michael traveled across the world to the 23 American cemeteries overseas where Oklahoma World War I and World War II soldiers are buried, placing a rose rock at each gravesite.
"I just knew it had to be done. No one had ever done it. I just felt like there’s an end purpose for it," said Beach.
That purpose playing out at events like this. Michael shared his story last week in Ardmore with the local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution.
“It just shows his love for his country and his willingness to just be there for someone he doesn’t even know. He makes me very proud to be an Oklahoman," said Diane Hamill of the DAR Ardmore chapter.
Not only did Michael visit more than 2,000 grave sites, when he returned home, he connected with many of the families of those fallen soldiers.
“I mean, I’ve cried," Beach said. "To be able to share that with them and then have them talk to me and share what they know. That’s all I needed.”
Michael continues to share those stories today through these presentations.
A journey that started 11 years ago, Michael’s mission endures, ensuring these Oklahoma heroes will never be forgotten.
“Even after these guys have been gone for 75-plus years, their stories are still there, their stories are still being told, so they’re still alive in a way,” he said.