News

Veterans thanked at MCCC

Joe Diaz, a Navy veteran, gives a speech at the Thank You, Veterans event Nov. 11. Diaz was promoted to Command Master Chief, the highest enlisted rank in the Navy and served for 40 years. He was involved in six wars.

Dozens of community members including six veterans attended the “Thank You, Veterans” event at the La-Z-Boy Center Nov. 11.

The event started with opening remarks from President Kojo Quartey and was followed by a moment of silence.

Afterward, the Pledge of Allegiance was said and the “Star-Spangled Banner” was played on trumpet by David Armstrong.

Wayne Blank, chair of the Monroe County Veterans Advisory Committee and Air Force veteran, spoke about the committee’s goals.

“If anybody would love to serve on that (the committee) we’re trying to set up some scholarships through the college,” Blank said.

Blank said he wants to see more veterans get involved around Monroe County and enjoys going to veteran events.

“I love to talk about vets,” Blank said. “It’s my passion.”

William Bruck, an Army veteran, gives a speech at the Thank You, Veterans event Nov. 11. Bruck served as an Army Reserve until September 11, 2001. Afterward, Bruck went to full-time service and was deployed to Iraq in 2003 for 18 months. He returned to Iraq in 2009 and 2010. He also deployed to Afghanistan in 2014.
David Armstrong plays the “Star-Spangled Banner” on his trumpet at the Thank You, Veterans event Nov. 11.
An American flag designed cake saying “Thank you veterans,” was served at the Thank You, Veterans event Nov. 11.
Wayne Blank, an Air Force veteran, right after saluting the flag before speaking at the Thank You, Veterans event Nov. 11.
Air Force veteran Wayne Blank, left, stands with Navy veteran Joe Diaz at the Thank You, Veterans event Nov. 11.
Left to right: Air Force veteran Wayne Blank, Army recruiter Payden Fultz, Army serviceman Anthony Ramsey, Navy veteran Joe Diaz, Army veteran William Bruck and Army veteran Dave O’Dell.
Payden Fultz, an Army recruiter for the Monroe area, thanks event goers for their support at the Thank You, Veterans event Nov. 11.
Dave O’Dell, an Army veteran, gives a speech at the Thank You, Veterans event Nov. 11. O’Dell served in the Army from 1982 to 1988.
Joe Diaz, a Navy veteran, listens to a speech at the Thank You, Veterans event Nov. 11. Diaz was promoted to Command Master Chief, the highest enlisted rank in the Navy and served for 40 years. He was involved in six wars.
Community members gathered at the La-Z-Boy Center for the Thank You, Veterans event Nov. 11.

William Bruck, trustee of MCCC and Army veteran, spoke to recognize Veterans Day and veterans in attendance.

“I spent September 11, 2001 in Egypt,” Bruck said. “I was a part-time soldier before that. After that there was no such thing as a part-time soldier.”

In 2003 Bruck was deployed to Iraq and spent 18 months there. He went back in 2009 and 2010 and then went to Afghanistan in 2014.

“It was awful, god awful,” Bruck said. “But the fact is we came home proud, and we came home to a country that loves us.”

Bruck thanked those in attendance, saying without them it would not be the same.

Bruck said he cannot imagine being a Vietnam veteran who came back to a country that did not thank or support them.

“Our biggest supporters, and I’ll say this till the day I die, is Vietnam veterans,” Bruck said. “They have supported the war on terror vets through and through. We greatly appreciate that.”

Bruck said the things veterans do best is getting up after they fail.

Other veterans and servicemen in attendance were: Dave O’Dell, Army veteran, Payden Fultz, Army serviceman, Anthony Ramsey, Army serviceman and Joe Diaz, Navy veteran.

The event was scheduled to be held on campus at Potter’s Field, but was moved inside due to inclement weather.

Potter’s Field is an unmarked cemetery used from 1832 to the 1940’s that was part of land granted to MCCC in 1964.

Among those buried is Ezra Younglove, a War of 1812 veteran awarded a gold medal for service as a sharp shooter on the ship Niagara during the Battle of Lake Erie, Sept. 1813.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*