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Mt. Pleasant veterans gather to observe and honor

GTNS photos by Gretchen Teske

Mark Williams, Dean King and Karl Schaeffer sang “Proud to be an American” at the veterans day ceremony on Sunday, Nov. 11.
GTNS photos by Gretchen Teske Mark Williams, Dean King and Karl Schaeffer sang “Proud to be an American” at the veterans day ceremony on Sunday, Nov. 11.
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Eight members of the Henry County Honor Guard stood outside the VFW building where a small crowd gathered, on Sunday, Nov. 11, and fired three volleys in honor of all veterans.

Karl Schaefer stood to the side and slowly raised his horn to his lips, playing taps immediately following the presentation.

“It’s fulfilling,” he said of being able to play.

Just before the presentation, veterans and civilians alike filled the VFW Hall to speak about their experiences and share memories.

Darla King, commander of the AMVETS, took the podium and spoke about why she felt it was so important to honor veterans.

King served two tours in Iraq and one in South Korea. She said Veterans Day is not only a day for remembrance but for honoring those who have served and risked their lives for freedom.

“Veterans have so much good that they do,” she said. “It’s building and renewing and that’s the part of being a soldier that you hold onto. When we’re there, we’re thinking about those things.”

She said that while the common perception is that soldiers simply fight, they also build schools, communities and try to strengthen ties. King said that everyone has a reason to honor veterans, especially on their day, because they have risked their lives for the freedom of all.

“I don’t think there’s a family or home that’s not touched,” she said, of civilians having a personal connection to Veterans Day.

In the King household, every day is Veterans Day as her father, Dean King, served before her. King holds a variety of roles including OIC (Officer in charge) of the Veterans Hall.

King said although the holiday has a somber tone, it’s important because it honors the fallen.

“I never call it a celebration,” he explained. “I call it observing. It’s a somber occasion, but we use it to honor those who have fallen.”