Veterans honored in two ceremonies

By: Megan Wood The Press Tribune
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Dressed in full Air Force attire, 22-year-old veteran Roger Moore stood before the WWII monument on Vernon Street in downtown Roseville Wednesday and said it was an honor to share in the legacy that so many others had begun. Clutching miniature American flags and singing their old armed forces fight songs, hundreds of veterans and their families gathered in for two Veterans Day ceremonies held at the Veterans Memorial Hall and at the WWII monument on Vernon Street. “Today is a day to honor and remember the people who fought for our country and our freedom,” said Jonathon Campbell of Citrus Heights, whose father is a former Marine and veteran of the first Gulf War. Jonathon and his father, Craig, attended the American Legion Veterans Day celebration at the Veterans Memorial Hall. “Remembering our fallen brothers and sisters is big for me today,” said Craig Campbell. A single, empty folding chair marked with a prisoner of war cover stood before the stage of the Veterans Hall to honor the missing, unaccounted for and fallen soldiers. Korean War veteran Bob Everitt attended the morning celebration to honor his fellow veterans and to show his appreciation for the veterans who came before him and the soldiers currently fighting overseas. The celebration was led by American Legion Commander Dave Ramsey and was attended by guest speakers Placer County Supervisor Rocky Rockholm, Assemblyman Ted Gaines, Colonel John Lathrop and Congressman Tom McClintock. McClintock asked the audience to reflect on the morning after the Sept. 11 attacks and the feeling of universal patriotism that was prevalent in the community. “Remember the men and women that enlisted because their country needed them and remember the soldiers who returned home as fallen heroes.” McClintock said. “Should you ever have any doubt that the American spirit is alive and very real, look into the eyes of a veteran. It always shines a little brighter with them.” The patriotic sentiment carried over into another Veterans Day celebration at the WWII Monument hosted by The Roseville Historical Society, SureWest Foundation and the city of Roseville. “On Memorial Day we honor our fallen soldiers, today we celebrate and remember those who are among us,” said City Councilman and veteran Jim Gray at the Veterans Day Ceremony held at the WWII Monument. Led by WWII United States Navy veteran and event organizer John Piches, the ceremony was punctuated with wartime stories, patriotic tunes played by Roseville High School Band and a three-rifle salute by Roseville Police. Piches recalled the U.S.’s entry to WWII and the 1,272 soldiers from Roseville-population then 5,600- that enlisted to fight. “Thirty seven of our boys did not come home, but all of their names can be found on this plaque,” Piches said. “And it’s because of them that we are here today.” United States Navy Veteran Captain Roger Linn remembered the homecoming of the Vietnam veterans. “There were no ‘Support your Troops’ ribbons. You came home, kept your service to yourself and resumed life as normally as possible,” Linn said. “Oh how times have changed. We can now differentiate between the war and the warrior and our soldiers are honored by a grateful nation.” Celeste Lyman of Roseville brought her four young children to the Vernon Street ceremony to honor her grandfather, a Korean War veteran, and to show her children that servicemen deserve their respect. “These are our heroes that served to protect our freedom,” Lyman said. “I am very proud of my grandfather and I will never forget what he did.”