UH-Clear Lake celebrates Veterans Day
HOUSTON, October 23, 2009 — Local veterans will get special recognition from University of Houston-Clear Lake as it hosts the seventh annual Veterans Day Celebration on Nov. 11.
Sponsored by the UH-Clear Lake’s Office of Alumni and Community Relations and supported by area businesses, organizations and volunteers, the event takes place 10:30 a.m. – noon at the university’s Liberty Park and Student Services and Classroom Building, 2700 Bay Area Blvd., Houston.
As in years past, the celebration will also acknowledge one particular branch of the armed services with this year’s honoree being the U.S. Marines. In addition, the celebration will recognize veterans from the aerospace industry.
Office of University Advancement Executive Secretary Cheryl Rohde who coordinates the event emphasizes, though, that all veterans are appreciated at the event and thanked for their service.
“We’ve had people bring their elderly veteran parents year after year because the parents are so moved by the warmth and sincerity of the event,” said Rohde. “We are also fortunate to be surrounded by so many veterans connected to NASA Johnson Space Center as well as those who are currently serving or have served at Ellington Field.”
During the month of November, stories about the experiences of veterans and their families will be on display in Atrium I of the university’s Bayou Building.
This year’s keynote speaker is Walter Cunningham, an astronaut and Marine veteran. Johnson Space Center is requesting NASA astronauts and other veterans sign one of five banners representing the branches of military service, which will be on display at the event for the veterans attendees to sign.
The ceremony will also include an Army helicopter flyover and the dedication of a gazebo, which will be “dedicated to the families of veterans and active duty personnel in recognition of their silent service to our nation, the daily sacrifices they make in support of our troops and the important role they play in keeping our nation safe.” clude an Apache Attack helicopter and vintage military vehicles and equipment on loan from Bluebonnet Military Motor Pool of Texas. One of them will be the M422 “Mighty-Mite,” a light weight 1/4 –ton jeep-like vehicle used by the Marine Corps in the early 1960s.
Vice president of the motor pool organization Jim Sanders says he drove one “just like it” while serving as a sergeant in the Marine Corp in Vietnam. He says people, and especially children, are amazed at the vehicles. For many veterans, they bring back memories of their time serving their country.
“I think it’s refreshing that UH-Clear Lake shows an interest in doing something for the vets that recognizes what they did and provides the public a way to show appreciation,” Sanders said.
For more information about the Veterans Day Celebration, visit http://www.uhcl.edu/veteransday or call the Office of Alumni and Community Relations, 281-283-2021.