By Shari Harris, Publisher
Texas County veteran organizations and the Houston Chamber of Commerce hosted Armed Forces Appreciation Day on Saturday, May 21. A Veterans’ Fair was followed by a meal and a program that honored veterans.
Veterans’ Fair exhibits included old iron displays and displays in the exhibit hall including AL Post 41, the Civil Air Patrol, local author Richard Britner, tables for Leadership Education and for technical equipment from the Chemical Corps at Fort Leonard Wood, representative Sean Matteson from the Missouri Veterans Commission, SE Missouri Veterans Service Officer Jim Juergens, and Kevin Durden with the Texas County Health Department.
This year’s program was emceed by AL member Rudy Blahnik.
Marty Elmore sang “Star Spangled Banner,” then accompanied Patti Elmore in “God Bless America.”
A mini USO show was provided by Ms. Lana Bucher, who entertained all by lip synching Patsy Cline’s “She’s Got You.”
Ret. SGM Don Rose was the guest speaker. He spoke of being a Soldier for Life, continuing to serve after discharge; once a soldier, always a soldier. He expressed concern over the lowest propensity to serve since 2007.
“America’s proud of you,” Rose said to the veterans. “God bless you.”
The branches of the military were recognized with a medley of songs, with veterans standing to represent where they served. Then veterans stood again based on the era in which they served. Two World War II veterans and two Korean veterans were seen in the crowd. The Vietnam era veterans outnumbered all others, including veterans since the Vietnam era.
Photos by Shari Harris