MOUNT GILEAD — Morrow County veterans past and present were on the hearts of those who attended Veterans Day events here Monday morning.
Fifteen bricks were dedicated at the Morrow County Veterans Memorial before a brief ceremony at the Victory Shaft downtown.
“We honor our brothers and sisters in arms in all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces,” said Frank Hickman, who served in the U.S. Army and served as master of ceremonies for the brick dedication.
“I know this about veterans. We still stand to defend our country yet today,” he said.
The following veterans’ bricks were dedicated:
Grat H. Meadows, Army, Korea; David U. Clark, Marine Corps, Vietnam; Albert J. Ullom, Army, World War I; William T. Spearman, Army, World War II; Stephen A. Cole, Army, 1965-67; Cal Shirk, Army, 1969-72; Phil Shirk, Air Force, 1967-71; Everettt V. Shirk, Army-Air Corps, World War II;
James Crawford, Air Force, Vietnam; Ralph E. Miley, Army, Vietnam; Randi Wolfe, Navy, 1979-83; Steve Montell, Navy, Vietnam; Don Broadwater Sr., Army, Vietnam; David Michael Jordan, Army, Vietnam; Harry J. Squires, Navy, 1960-63.
Hickman spoke about sacrifice that veterans have made and continue to make for America.
“These memorial bricks serve as a constant reminder of their service,” Hickman said and referred to a quote by Gen. George S. Patton Jr. that he said during World War II:
“The soldier is the Army. No army is better than its soldiers. The soldier is also a citizen. In fact, the highest obligation and privilege of citizenship is that of bearing arms for one’s country.”
Hickman offered a prayer for veterans to conclude the ceremony.
“Bless them for their unselfish service; service given for each and every one of us.”
The welcome and invocation for the ceremony on the square were made by Ric Lyle, a retired Chief MSgt., having served 33 years in the U.S. Air Force and a veteran of the Afghanistan War on Terror.
Placing wreaths for this year’s ceremony were Steve Montell, Commander and Robert Wyeth, Auxiliary President of the V.F.W. Nelson E. Campbell, Jr. Post 8054, Mount Gilead; Don Broadwater, Commander and Teresa Bowman, Auxiliary President of the AMVETS Post 87, Mount Gilead.
Musical selections, the National Anthem and Taps were performed by the Mount Gilead High School Band.
Park Avenue Elementary brought 90 fourth-grade students to the Veterans Day program. They carried small American flags and some shouted “thank you for your service” to veterans.
VFW Post 8054 served a free lunch for veterans and their families after the program.