Florida Campground Honors Nation's Vets
More than 100 veterans, their families, friends and supporters celebrated Veterans Day, Thursday, at Cypress Campground on Cypress Gardens Boulevard in Lake Wales, Fla., the Lake Wales News reported.
The moving ceremony featured a 21-gun salute and presentation of the colors by the honor guards from VFW Posts 4289 and 2420.
Brian D. Green Sr., chaplain of VFW Post 2420, spoke to a solemn audience.
“Memories come back of family and old comrades, of distant days and places,” said Green. “Americans today are marking the day with a great expression of respect for all who have worn the uniform of this great country.”
Karaoke music by country stars, courtesy of “LeAnne,” filled the air prior to Green’s remarks. A picnic meal was enjoyed.
Green mentioned that since the founding of the United States, 50 million men and women have served in the armed services, with roughly half still alive.
“American veterans have always answered the call to duty, to protect and defend the United States and provide the very blanket of freedom and security that we all enjoy today,” said Green.
Pastor Bob Hill gave the opening prayer and Karen Waldon sang the "National Anthem."
“Freedom isn’t free,” said Green. “Freedom is not a gift: Freedom is very costly.
“It is an earned benefit that was paid for by the heroes that stand before you today and around the world.”
It was a day to remember the American soldier who left an indelible mark on the world, and changed it for the better.
Green said those soldiers went by many names, including, GI, Leatherneck, Yanks, Fly boy, Swabby, WAC, WAVE, and just plain Joe.
“But here at home we knew them by different names, like Dad, Mom, brother, sister, son, daughter, husband, wife and sweetheart,” said Green. “They have paved the way with their lives, so that you and I and all Americans can still stand on our shores and be called the land of the free and the home of the brave.”
Lou Kovack, chaplain of VFW Post 4289, is a Vietnam Veteran. He talked about the special day.
“As long as its celebrated properly, it’s the greatest thing in the world,” said Kovack. “A lot of veterans have to be told they’re appreciated.”