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Veterans Day observed today, Friday

By: Stephanie Dumm News Messenger Reporter
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Veterans Day Celebrations in Lincoln VFW Ceremony Where: Veteran’s Hall, 541 Fifth St. When: 11:11 a.m. today Lincoln Hills Veterans Group Ceremony Where: Orchard Creek Ballroom, 965 Orchard Creek Lane When: Music starts at 10:15 a.m., ceremony at 11 a.m. today Twelve Bridges Elementary School Veteran’s Day Celebration Where: 2450 Eastridge Drive When: 8:15 a.m., Friday Do not be alarmed this morning if you hear a 21-gun salute in downtown Lincoln around 11:11 a.m. One of three Veterans Day ceremonies will take place on the steps of the Veteran’s Hall on Fifth Street, conducted by Semper Fi, American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars. The ceremony begins at 11:11 a.m. because the armistice to end World War I was signed Nov. 11, 1918, also known as the 11th minute after the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month, according to Kent Parsell, commander for VFW Post 3010 in Lincoln. A soloist will sing “The Star-Spangled Banner,” “Taps” will be played, followed by a 21-gun salute, which Parsell said is three volleys by seven rifles. City Council-elect Stan Nader will give a speech. “Veterans Day celebrates the veterans who are surviving,” Parsell said. “The best part is seeing the citizens come out and say thank you, and seeing them out at the ceremony makes you feel good.” Bob Perro, junior vice commander for VFW Post 3010, said, “We can never forget the sacrifice.” “What it (Veteran’s Day) means to me is the freedoms that we have are not given lightly,” said Perro, whose family members have served in the military since the Civil War. “A lot of people suffered and gave their all so we can have what we have today.” To John Perkins, American Legion Post 264 commander, showing respect for veterans is one reason Veteran’s Day is important. “The biggest thing we have is to show respect for the veterans who defended the freedom we have, and to make young people a little more aware about the sacrifice the veterans made as far as defending our way of life,” Perkins said. Both Perkins and Perro served in the Air Force, and Parsell in the Army. Another Veterans Day ceremony today will be at the Orchard Creek Ballroom in Sun City, conducted by the Lincoln Hills Veterans Group. The program will kick off at 10:15 a.m., with patriotic music by the Roseville Community Concert Band, according to Steve Witmer, vice president for the Lincoln Hills Veterans Group. The ceremony, starting at 11 a.m., will include a reading of “In Flanders Fields,” a presentation by Twelve Bridges Elementary School and an honoring of vets serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. Witmer, who served in the Air Force, said the ceremony in Lincoln Hills is “unique because it’s a community-wide celebration.” “I know so many people whose contributions I viewed far greater than mine and I think this is a day to pay tribute to all of them,” Witmer said. “They deserve one day out of the year to be recognized for what they did for the country.” For the younger set, a Veteran’s Day celebration will take place at 8:15 a.m. Friday in the school’s gym. Principal Jeremy Lyche said the public is invited. “We will have our entire student body together to honor veterans and active-duty military personnel from our families, as well as Sun City,” Lyche said. Lyche said there will be patriotic songs, live performances by students and a video slide show with photos featuring the veterans and active-duty personnel.