Before a crowd of more than 5,000, Vice President Dick Cheney on Friday honored the lives of men who helped forge America by “fighting valiantly” in the Battle of Chicka­mauga.

As a part of the battle event, the great-grandfather to Cheney, Samuel Fletcher Cheney, was recognized for the role he played in the Battle of Chickamauga while fighting in the Union’s Army of the Cumberland under Maj. Gen. William S. Rosecrans.

Samuel Cheney was a 34-year-old lieutenant who served in the 21st Ohio Volunteer Infantry during the two-day battle Sept. 19-20, 1863.

“I know his service to his country meant as much to him as it did to those who joined him on these fields,” Cheney said. .

The 145th re-enactment of the Battle of Chickamauga will continue through the weekend with battles scheduled throughout Saturday and Sunday. Living history displays and vendors will also be on hand throughout the weekend.

During the battle 145 years ago Union forces were pushed back into Chattanooga from Chickamauga by Confederate divisions led by Confederate leaders such as Nathan Bedford Forest and James Longstreet. Heavy fighting at Chickamauga resulted in one of the bloodiest battles fought in the four-year conflict.

There were more than 34,000 causalities in the Chickamauga battle — 16,170 federal and 18,546 Confederate

(Rome News Tribune)