WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – A bell that was part of the USS Wichita was presented to the City of Wichita on Friday afternoon.

Wichita received the bell as a gift from the American Legion Post 292 in Somerville, Tennessee. The bell was received from the widow of a Navy chief who passed away years ago. It has been in Tennessee since.

“Shortly, about three days after the funeral, his widow approached us and gave us the bell to the USS Wichita. It turned out he was the last senior chief of the USS Wichita when it was sailed into to be decommissioned. So, he took the bell with him rather than be scrapped,” said Jeffrey Kenneth Malone, American Legion of Somerville.

Vietnam veteran Hal Rounds, also part of the American Legion in Somerville, used walnut to make a stand for the bell to be mounted on. The bell has been used in Somerville as part of veteran funerals and events.

USS Wichita bell (KSN Photo)

“If you look at the silhouette on the left-hand side, I picked that piece of wood. It appeared to me, and I was able to cut it in the right shape and dimensions. To me, it symbolizes a spirit weeping,” said Rounds.

After several years, the two men decided to give it to Wichita.

“It says Wichita. It belongs to the people of the City of Wichita, and that’s how we feel about it,” Malone said.

“It served the people of America through the name of Wichita,” Rounds added.