the BEACON Newspaper, Indiana beacon1-19 - Page 9

January 2019 On Veterans Day, the com- munity gathered to honor all veterans. Mr. Nick Ullrich gave a moving speech in honor of the occasion. The following is being shared with you to remind all of us of the true meaning of Veterans Day. By Nick Ullrich It is an honor for me to be able to say a few words this morning on this the 100th anniversary of this November holiday. By being here today and tak- ing time to reflect on the ser- vice and sacrifice of Veterans, you are demonstrating your patriotism, and we thank you. We celebrate this day by honoring all veterans. That’s all the men and women who have worn the uniform of any of the five branches of the military. Whether you enlisted, were drafted or you volun- teered for the draft, you went where you were needed, you did what you were told. You were taught the value of disci- pline, hard work, and respect. I can tell you from personal experience that serving and defending our country was the greatest privilege of my life. There is no greater honor! Wherever we are on Veterans Day, we can do no less than pause for one small moment to reflect upon the more than one million heroes who did not return to us. Those who gave what President Lincoln called “the last full measure of devotion.” Their ultimate sacrifice serves as a constant reminder of the cost of free- dom and the hope for a safer, more peaceful world. Looking back on my own time in the service, I can only tell you some of my experi- ence, and I’m sure there are others here who can relate. A friend of mine and I volun- teered for the draft in the fall of 1966. We were 19 years old and tired of waiting every month for that letter from “our friends and neighbors” at the draft board. At least we had the peace of mind know- ing we had until Feb. 1st. At that time we boarded a bus to Fort Knox for basic training. At the end of basic, they held back five men, two of us from Aurora, out of 254 trainees to wait for the next graduating class at which time they sent a planeload of troops to Ft. Polk, S THE BEACON Page 9A ALUTE TO THE MILITARY Nick Ullrich shared a mov- ing speech for the Veterans Day program. PG Gentrup was an inte- gral part of the planning of the event. Jackie Schornick, Melody Schornick, Marcia Elliott, and Paul Elliott were presented with a flag to honor the memory of his service to the veterans. E.G. and Judge McLaugh- lin were joined by Paula Gentrup to honor the veterans. LA for infantry training. We were taken in the pitch black of night some 70 odd miles in cattle cars to an area of Ft. Polk called Tigerland. It was the perfect place to train for jungle warfare! After training at Polk we were sent home for twenty days leave and then flown halfway around the world to a country called Vietnam. When the doors opened on our jet, the first thing that hit us was the overwhelming stench and the unbearable heat. The combina- tion literally took your breath away. I think it was at that mo- ment that a planeload of G.I’s thought to themselves, “what have I gotten myself into”? I knew this next year was going to be a long one, and that’s if I made it through at all. The only consolation was… you were not alone. You were with your brothers. Out in the field, we were all brothers! It didn’t matter who you were or where you came from. There was a bond between us far greater than color or religion. You watch my back, and I’ll watch yours and maybe, just maybe, we will make it home. That was the number one priority for us all! But it didn’t work out for everyone. A trip to the WALL shows that! I’ve been to the wall a number of times over the years, and I see their faces and remember the bond we had with each other. We fought in triple canopy jungles, flooded rice patties, tall el- ephant grass and the streets of Saigon during the TET Offen- Aliana Schornick, Nelson Elliott’s granddaughter, stood as the flag was folded for presentation to her family. sive of ’68. WE were brothers. That’s just a little of my sto- ry. As I stand here today and look around me, I see many veterans from different branch- es, different eras and all with their own stories. The young people of today should take the time and talk to veterans. Ask questions and learn from them. We need to pass down our his- tory to future generations. Throughout history, Ameri- cans have always answered the call to duty at home and in distant lands. They saw civilization threatened and they rescued it. They saw de- mocracy challenged and they defended it. They saw our rights endangered and they sought to restore them. According to historians, Dwight D. Eisenhower said that he was prouder of being a soldier than he was of being the President of the United States. Oh, “the times they are a- changin.” Sadly today there are fewer than 10% of Ameri- cans who can claim the title of “Veteran.” That’s one reason we should celebrate this day and honor those who have contributed so much to the cause of world peace and the preservation of our way of life. I also believe Veterans Day is a Day for ALL Americans. The Color Guard stood at attention during the presen- tation of wreaths. I’d personally like to thank all of the families of veterans for their support, love, and understanding. Many of my generation had a difficult time trying to readjust to living in the “real world” again after returning home from that war. I know my wife went through some tough times with me, and I’m sure other Vet’s wives and family members can relate to that as well. And so my fellow Veterans, Quinn Burdette learned the meaning of Veterans Day from Jerry Bondurant. let us take this day to thank all those who are dear to us. In closing, I’d like to paraphrase Winston Churchill when he said – “Never has so much been owed, by so many, to so few.” God bless America, and God bless those who love, guard and defend our precious freedom. Declutter for the New Year In an original three-part workshop, Molly Resendes of Green and Tidy, LLC will share insights, tips and advice about how to finally conquer your clutter. See more at our website! Workshops held at the Lawrenceburg Public Library. Register for one or all three at www.lpld.lib.in.us Stop Reorganizing - Declutter! Saturday, 1/12/19 1 PM Storage Struggles - Optimize Space on a Budget Dealing with Sentimental Clutter Saturday, 2/9/19 1 PM Saturday, 3/9/19 1 PM SHOP LOCAL and tell our advertisers you saw their ads in The BEACON!