Megan Newman, ‘Doah Editor-in-Chief
November 20, 2013
On Veteran’s day, Monday, Nov. 11, 90 volunteers read the names of over 6770 fallen soldiers lost in Operation New Dawn (Operation Iraqi Freedom) and Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan). The roll call began with the opening ceremony where university President Tracy Fitzsimmons spoke.
The signing of “America the Beautiful” followed and Rev. Dr. Justin Allen spoke and asked for a moment of silence. The roll call took over nine hours and honored about 12% of the total number of soldiers who lost their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan. The photos of some of the fallen soldiers were displayed on a slideshow in the room.
Among the readers were S.U. students and alumni, the president of Rolling Thunder, Tom Riggs, Veterans, Radio DJs from stations 92.5 and 104.9 and many others in the Winchester area who wished to honor those who served our country.
In addition to listening to the names and viewing the slide show, roll call attendees were able to sign the roll call banner, write a letter to a deployed soldier and tie a yellow ribbon to a wreath in support of our troops.
Closing ceremony began with a plane carrying a banner reading “Thank you Veterans” flying over the field followed by the singing of the national anthem by Julia Buhagiar. Randolph Macon High School JROTC served as color guard and performed the flag folding ceremony, narrated by Lieutenant Colonel Sebring.
The narration also included information about the history of the military in America and how important it is that we take time to honor our Veterans.
The ceremony concluded with a 21 gun salute fired by the Winchester Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2123, and taps performed by S.U. Student, James Fox.