A Veteran’s Day flag ceremony in Vicksburg’s Oswalt Park at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, November 11, will celebrate the service of American military veterans. Originally this day and time was set aside to recognize the official end of World War I. The November 11 date was changed from Armistice Day to Veterans Day in 1954 to honor all veterans. The Vicksburg Veterans of Foreign Wars, Captain Charles Osborne Post 5189 will perform a special flag ceremony and a twenty-one gun salute to honor our veterans.
After the ceremonies in the park, veterans and their families are invited to the Depot Museum, where the Vicksburg Historical Society plans to inaugurate a new flag pole in the front of the building at 1 p.m. Money to buy and replace a rusted and non-functional flag pole was donated by the Rotary and Lions Clubs. Members of the two clubs who are veterans will be honored during this short ceremony, according to Warren Lawrence who has been orchestrating the funding.
There will be another activity to honor veterans on Sunday, November 8. The Boy Scouts of Troop 251 and their families will treat all veterans, whether they served at home or abroad, to lunch at the Vault at 1 p.m.
“This day should be more widely celebrated. Most American families have a veteran or know a veteran. Today is the day to ask them about their service,” according to Jim Hamrick, the Quartermaster for the VFW post.
“Many veterans are reluctant to share their service experiences for a variety of reasons,” Hamrick said. He is a retired U.S. Air Force Senior Master Sergeant with 20 years and eight months of active duty. “The horrors of combat, sad memories, or perhaps veterans don’t want to burden others with tragic circumstances. When veterans share their experiences, the better loved ones can help and support them. Some veterans carry sad memories of service even if they never saw combat. Military service is trying no matter what the circumstances. Every veteran should be proud of their achievements. They met the challenges of basic training, advanced training, long hours and family separation. Be proud!” Hamrick said. He served in Viet Nam from 1970-71, and now lives at Kline’s Resort.
“Every veteran is a hero no matter what position they held, a clerk typist who created the paper trail, the cook who fed the troops, medics, engineers, truck drivers, no matter the job it took the whole team to win victory after American victory. Sure the combat pilot, rifleman, and sailor get the big medals, like the Medal of Honor or Silver Star and yes every Purple Heart wearer is a hero, but it takes the whole team,” Hamrick pointed out. “Take time to remember fallen comrades, they gave their all, but living veterans should be proud of their achievements and take this special day to celebrate.”