Audie Murphy Memorial Marker
Located Near Roanoke, Virginia
Erected by VFW Post 5311, Christiansburg, Virginia

Marker erected near plane crash site.
Albert Pyle
Photo Provided by Mike West
This marker was erected by the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5311 near the plane crash site. The crash site is close to Roanoke, Virginia (see map shown below for location). The gentleman in the photo is Mr. Albert Pyle, who was assigned to Company B, 15th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division and served with Audie Murphy During World War II. Mr. Pyle was with him when Audie was serioulsy wounded in the hip. After Audie's death, Mr. Pyle wrote down his recollections of Audie which he gave to Pamela Murphy. Mr. Pyle remembered, "Just before he was shot, he had managed to capture a German non-com and his radio man. . . The stretcher bearers picked Murphy up, but he still held a carbine across his middle. Grinning, he directed his two prisoners ahead of him as they made their way down the side of the hill. . . .This then was the shy Audie Murphy, so badly wounded and still attempting to complete his job, even though he is was in great pain."
Marker Inscription

Audie Leon Murphy
June 20, 1924 - May 28, 1971

Born in Kingston, Texas. Died near this site in an airplane crash. America's most decorated Veteran of World War II. He served in the European Theatre, 15th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division and earned 24 Decorations including the Medal of Honor, Legion of Merit, Distinguished Service Cross, and Three Purple Hearts.

He was survived by his wife Pamela and two sons Terry Michael and James Shannon.

Erected by Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5311, Christiansburg, Virginia.

Marker erected near plane crash site.
Photo Provided by Fred Davis

Approximate Location

 Memorial Site Location.
Map Location Provided by Mary Anne Sutphin

The site itself is located along a small leg of the Appalachian Trail which travels over several peaks and saddles. The blue blazed trail behind the monument leads to an overlook with excellent views of Sinking Creek Valley. There is also a lovely bed and breakfast place about 30 miles away where you can stay for the night. Owned and operated by Ray Batiato and Mary Virginia Haskins, its right smack on the Blue Ridge Parkway at milepost 159.3. Visit the Stonewall Bed and Breakfast for more details.

Route 624 Sign.
Route 624 Sign
Photo Provided by Fred Davis

To reach the site from the town of Blackburg, take Mainstreet to Mount Tabor Road (also known as Route 624). Go 12 miles just past Route 650 and turn left onto a gravel road (FSP 188.1). You need to go 1.8 miles and then turn right at the top of Brush Mountain. Continue 1.6 Miles to the parking lot gate.

Sign at Gate and Parking Lot.
Sign at Main Gate and Parking Lot
Photo Provided by Fred Davis

You will come to a parking lot. From here, you will have to hike about 7/10's of a mile to the memorial.

Fork in the Trail ... Go Left.
Fork In The Trail
Photo Provided by Fred Davis

After leaving the parking lot and entering the trail, you need to take the left path at the fork.

Memorial and Visitor's Bench.
Memorial and Visitor's Bench
Photo Provided by Fred Davis

After a hiking less than a mile, you will come arrive at the marker if you stick to the trail. There is a bench nearby you can rest at too.

  Road Distance:     17 miles  
  Trail Difficulty:     Easy  
  Hiking Distance:     1.5 mile loop  
  Elevation:     3100 feet  
  County Location:     Craig & Roanoke Counties  
  Site Name:     Brush Mountain  
  Blackburg Ranger Station  
  110 Southpark Drive  
  Blackburg, Virginia 24060  
  Phone:     (540) 552-4641  
  Directions and Location Information Provided by Sue Gossett  

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Last updated 20 August 2006