Veterans honored at Ligonier ceremony
Patriotism, remembrance, honor and support were entwined on Nov. 9, as a crowd of all ages and allegiances gathered to pay tribute to the military men and women, past and present.
The ceremony began with an introductory welcome by master of ceremonies Steve Kimmick, who serves as second vice-commander of the Byers-Tosh Post 267.
D.J. Jackson, Byers-Tosh Post 267 commander, followed, thanking the audience that lined the Bandstand and streets.
“We want to thank the LVHS band, the Junior ROTC-all of you have taken time out of your day. We really, really appreciate it,” said Jackson, who served in the U.S. Navy for 25 years.
He went on to emphasize the efforts of sacrifice, tolerance, bravery and discipline.
“We must cultivate these virtues — in a quest for world peace,” Jackson said.
Ligonier Mayor Ormond “Butch” Bellas took the podium, calling on citizens to proudly display the country's flag and salute the fallen and departed. The mayor personally lauded the veterans. “You were there for all of us,” he said.
After the speakers, hands and hats were placed on hearts, as a firing squad comprised of four veterans fired commemorative shots and a live version of taps was played by a trumpeter on the bandstand. The Ligonier Valley High School marching band performed “The Star Spangled Banner” and the flag was raised.
“It's good we should remember-we need to honor our vets,” affirmed Simon Brown, 12, a Ligonier Valley Middle School student and member of Boy Scout Troop 375, who didn't mind dedicating his Saturday morning in order to do just that.
After the ceremony, participants gathered at the American Legion for a luncheon and ceremonial cake cutting.
“The ceremony was really nice,” said Jackson. “We weren't sure what to expect, but it was a really nice crowd, all who gave up their time to join us today.”
Perhaps the most observative summation of the Veterans Day observance came from Caitlin Michaels, 17, a Ligonier Valley High School student and member of the Junior ROTC.
“It is really emotional, every year, especially when they play taps.” Some of us, like me, want to start serving in the military, and when I see all of this I think forward-to the comrades that will be at my side,” said Michaels.
Rebecca Ridinger is a contributing writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Valley Players celebrate 50 years with performance of ‘Harvey’
- Ligonier groups efforts prove transformative to veterans