A Grateful Nation Thanks You
Tue, 11/15/2022 - 12:09pm caleb
Grayling VFW conducts annual Veterans Day ceremony on Friday, November 11, at American Legion Post 106
Caleb Casey | Managing Editor
The VFW 3736 Carl Borchers Post conducted a Veterans Day ceremony on Friday at the Grayling American Legion Post 106, honoring those who have served in the United States military.
The event included performances by the Grayling High School choir and two students playing Taps. The guest speaker this year was Bob Green of Mid-Michigan Honor Flight. Mid-Michigan Honor Flight is a program that offers World War II, Korean War, and Vietnam War veterans a free one-day trip to Washington D.C. to visit memorial sites.
Green said he served in the US Army in the early 1980s, and many people in his family have served.
“My family has a strong military history starting with my great uncles on my dad’s side. Three of them and two of my dad’s brothers served in World War II at the same time, and then my dad and his other two brothers served in Korea at the same time. My son and I went back around three generations and we found over 30 people in our family that have served in the military,” Green said.
“I am honored and privileged to have the best job in the world. I’m the president of Mid-Michigan Honor Flight and I get to fly World War II, Korean War, and Vietnam veterans to Washington D.C. twice a year – three times a year starting next year – to visit the memorials that are dedicated to their service to our country,” Green said. “I’ve shook hands with Pearl Harbor survivors, survivors of Normandy, Medal of Honor recipients, you name it, we have had veterans fly with us.”
Green spoke about the first time that he went on an Honor Flight, meeting a World War II veteran who rushed the beach at Normandy, took cover, looked back, and saw that he was the only one from his platoon who made it. Green spoke about what it means to veterans to see the memorials and feel the support from people during the events.
“I’ve had Vietnam veterans come up to me after an Honor Flight and give me a big hug and tell me ‘thank you, I’ve got some healing now.’ I’ve had World War II veterans come up to me and say ‘I didn’t know that my service meant anything to anybody other than my family and I now know that it does,’ and I want you all to understand that; your service means something to everyone,” Green said.
“We live in a country that’s free because of the continuing service. We may not be in battle today, we may not be fighting a war someplace today, but we have troops that are deployed around the world to ensure that we live in a country that’s free, that we have freedoms that allow us to voice our opinions, allow us to attend the church that we choose, that allow us to vote in free elections and to write things on the internet, in the news, to report things and not have to worry about being jailed or executed for what we say or what we think, and that and those freedoms all come from the veterans that have served, and for your service, thank you. If you’ve never been told it before, a grateful nation thanks you for your service,” Green said.
Leonard Nemeth of the VFW 3736 Carl Borchers Post said he met Green during the Northern Michigan Veterans Benefit Fair at the Grayling Ramada Inn last month, and Green was “graciously kind to be our speaker.”
“I liked Bob Green’s speech very well. It was very informative,” Nemeth said.
Nemeth said he appreciated the contributions to the ceremony from the Grayling High School students.
“For the choir, we’ve been blessed with them. Same with the trumpets. The school’s been very good,” Nemeth said.
Nemeth said he would like to see more veterans join the VFW, which meets 7-8 p.m. on the second Tuesday of every month at the American Legion. Nemeth said he’s posted cards at Family Fare and Save A Lot in Grayling that have his phone number for more information.
In addition to the annual Veterans Day ceremony at the American Legion, Nemeth said the VFW also conducts the annual Fourth of July Parade and poppy sales to help recognize veterans, but he “would like to see more done” for those who have served the country.
“Please remember your veterans. Honor them, respect them, and give them the dignity they deserve,” Nemeth said.