Veterans Day events planned for long weekend
by Rachael Griffin
Star Staff Writer
Nov 07, 2012 | 4383 views |  0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The traditional observance of Armistice Day takes place on Sunday, but the federal holiday of Veterans Day will be Monday. Local organizations have planned several events starting Friday to celebrate veterans.

FRIDAY

The Kitty Stone Elementary School in Jacksonville is honoring veterans with a program at 2 p.m. Students will talk about the significance of Veterans Day, the Jacksonville State University ROTC program will present the colors, and the Kitty Stone Singers will sing “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

The presentation will also honor local former Marine and Afghanistan War veteran Ben Tomlinson.

All are welcome to attend this event, which will take place in the elementary school courtyard.

SUNDAY

The annual Veterans Day Parade in Anniston will begin at 2 p.m. The parade steps off at 15th and Noble Street and will feature two local veterans as co-grand marshals: World War II veteran Frank M. Turner Sr. and Tomlinson were selected to lead the parade by the Calhoun County Veterans Organization. The parade will honor veterans from all wars and military branches.

The Vietnam Veterans America and Disabled Veterans of America will host a ceremony at Centennial Memorial Park in Anniston at 11 a.m. The ceremony will feature a twenty-one gun salute and a memorial for fallen comrades. Singer Steve Chappell will be on hand to sing patriotic songs.

Ken Rollins, who organized the ceremony, explained why it needs to happen on Sunday, even if that means being absent from church.

“We celebrate Veterans Day at 11 o’clock on the eleventh day of the eleventh month to remember Armistice Day,” he said. “We’ll be honoring God and country that day and I feel that God will forgive us for missing church.”

MONDAY

Golden Corral in Oxford will host a free dinner to thank veterans between 4 p.m. and 9 p.m. The Disabled American Veterans is hosting this event and organizers expect more than 4,000 people to attend. All veterans are welcome for a free meal and donations will be accepted to support the local DAV chapters.

Charles Fisher, the Alabama Department Commander, describes the evening as “very rewarding, nothing better than to see a vet smile.”

NHC Place in Anniston will unveil its new room of veterans memorabilia at 2 p.m. Through donations from veterans’ families and outposts, the assisted living center has turned an unused library room into an archive of information about past wars. Veterans who live there will cut the ribbon to open the room to the public.

Visitors will have the opportunity to read stories from veterans, watch videos, and inspect World War II artifacts, from planes to helmets to tank binoculars.

Derrick Scott, an administrator at the facility, decided to create the room when he realized the veterans living there would have daily conversations about World War II and their memories of Fort McClellan.

“It gives our veterans a sense of pride and their stories won’t get lost,” Scott said.

Scott hopes many visitors will be local school groups and he’s already been contacted by several history teachers about potential field trips.

The archive will be a permanent part of NHC Place and there’s already been talk of an expansion with the generous amount of artifacts people have donated.

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Veterans Day events planned for long weekend by Rachael Griffin
Star Staff Writer

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