Published Sunday, November 11, 2012
Today is Veterans Day, a time when we honor and salute all the men and women — past and present — who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces.
Here in Newnan, the community will celebrate its veterans at 11 a.m. Monday during the annual Veterans Day program at the Veterans Plaza in the city park at Jackson Street and Temple Avenue. Former Army officer Mel Hayden will be recognized as Coweta County’s Veteran of the Year.
Our community takes great pride in recognizing its veterans. We honor them in a big way on Memorial Day, on Veterans Day and during the annual Muster activities. Our schools hold programs inviting our veterans to share their experiences with our young students of today. These programs are special for the veterans and for the students.
On this Veterans Day, we quote from a column written by Peter Wheeler, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Veterans Services.
Said Wheeler, “On Veterans Day, we join together in a common cause, a salute to all who have served together; for freedom and for liberty. All have faced the greatest test that can be applied to American citizenship; being willing to risk your life to defend your citizenship. Every man and woman who put on the wartime military uniform of the United States and served with honor has passed this test of citizenship.”
Why did they do it?
“Simply because there was a job to be done and they were the ones called upon to do it,” said Wheeler. “What was the result of their sacrifice? Simply this: America, to this day, remains a free country.”
Indeed, we do live in a free country. We must never forget that fact, and we must never forget that freedom was won and has been protected by all the veterans who have served their country — yesterday, today and beyond.