At 11 o'clock sharp in the VA Medical Center Auditorium Thursday morning, veterans were honored in the 2010 Veterans Day ceremony. Sheridan Media's Mary Jo Johnson has the report.
After a welcome, the posting of the colors, an invocation, the Fort Mackenzie High School winners reading their Elks Veterans Day Essays and a proclamation from the Governor being read, the full auditorium was treated to a moving speech given by Lt. Lee Alley, Chairman of the Wyoming Veterans Commission.
Lt. Alley, a Vietnam War veteran, said that while he has spoken all around the country to various organizations and groups, he was nervous to speak in front of his comrades, because they are “the real deal; you have served this country.”
He used his particular experience in Vietnam to talk about the emotional wounds that he came home with. How for years he has had dreams of a particular battle where only eight of 35 fellow soldiers survived. And how he'd bought into the mentality that Vietnam veterans are perceived as homeless drug addict losers. Until he'd tried to learn what had ever become of a comrade who'd been shot in that battle.
On behalf of all our Sheridan Media and Country Bounty staff, this is Mary Jo Johnson, thanking the men and women who have served, are serving, and are training to serve in the US armed forces, protecting all of us, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Click here to hear the majority of Lt. Alley's fifteen minute speech.