American Legion Harry Higgins Post 88 Veterans Day Service: Honoring Those Who Served
Yesterday, American Legion Harry Higgins Post 88 held a Veterans Day Service to honor the brave men and women who have served in the Armed Forces of the United States. Led by Acting Commander Steve Williams and Chaplain Dave Abbruzzese, this service was a heartfelt tribute to those who have selflessly defended our nation. State Representative Melanie Miller graced the occasion with her rendition of the National Anthem, filling the air with patriotism.
During the service, the guest speaker, Kenneth Hammontree, reminded us of the three words that epitomize the dedication and sacrifice of our U.S. armed services: Duty, Honor, and Country. These words are etched on a large tablet at the U.S. military academy at West Point, serving as a constant reminder of the core values that guide our armed forces. From the Revolutionary War in 1776 to the present day, our veterans have always held true to these principles.
As we gathered on this eleventh month, eleventh day, and eleventh hour, we were reminded that World War I, the war to end all wars, came to a close. Hammontree emphasized that being born free is a privilege, but dying free is a tremendous responsibility. Throughout our nation's history, countless men and women have borne that responsibility, valiantly defending our freedoms. At the World War II Memorial in Washington D.C., the wall of stars stands as a poignant reminder of the immense sacrifice made by over 400,000 war heroes. Each star represents 100 lives lost. Inscribed on the wall are the words, "Here we mark the price of freedom."
Unlike the unknown soldiers laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery, whose identities are known only to God, memorials bearing the names of thousands of fallen heroes can be found in every corner of our great nation. These memorials serve as tangible reminders of the sacrifice made by brave men and women in service to their country. Carl Sandburg poignantly captured the essence of valor when he said, "Valor is a gift. Those having it never know for sure they have it until the test comes." Today, we honor those heroes who demonstrated extraordinary valor when duty called.
The Veterans Day Service concluded with the Ashland Veterans Honor Guard rendering a solemn 21-Gun Salute on the Post 88 front lawn. This poignant and emotional moment paid tribute to the fallen soldiers, reminding us all of the price they paid for our freedom. Lunch was then prepared and served by the American Legion Auxiliary, a gesture of appreciation for the veterans and their families. American Legion Harry Higgins Post 88 takes great pride in conducting this annual ceremony, ensuring that the sacrifices of our servicemen and women are never forgotten.
As we reflect on the Veterans Day Service at American Legion Harry Higgins Post 88, we are reminded of the immense gratitude we owe to those who have fought, died, and continue to serve in the Armed Forces of the United States. Their commitment to duty, unwavering honor, and love for their country are qualities we must hold dear. Let us always remember their sacrifice and express our heartfelt appreciation to all veterans who have served and continue to serve. Our freedoms and way of life exist because of their bravery and selflessness.