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11/11/2011 10:02:00 PM
Saluting servicemen past, present and future
More than 1,000 people turn out for Veterans Day parade
Les Stukenberg/The Daily CourierEmily Robinson, 6, of Prescott Valley waves her flag during the 2011 Veterans Day Parade at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Friday in Prescott.
Les Stukenberg/The Daily Courier
Emily Robinson, 6, of Prescott Valley waves her flag during the 2011 Veterans Day Parade at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Friday in Prescott.
Les Stukenberg/The Daily Courier
Order of the Purple Heart members drive military-outfitted Jeeps during the 2011 Veterans Day Parade at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Friday in Prescott.
Les Stukenberg/The Daily Courier
Order of the Purple Heart members drive military-outfitted Jeeps during the 2011 Veterans Day Parade at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Friday in Prescott.
+ view more photos
The 2011 Veterans Day Parade at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University Friday, November 11, 2011 in Prescott.
2011 Veterans Day Parade award winners
Musical Groups

Bradshaw Mountain High School Marching Band

Prescott High School Marching Band

1920s Circus Calliope/Earl Wolf

Hospital Entries by Veterans

1st Place: Domiciliary/All Vets Support Group

2nd Place: Vet Center

Commercial Clubs

1st Place: Camp Verde Cavalry

2nd Place: Prescott Antique Auto Club

Service and Fraternal Organizations

1st Place: Prescott Elks Club #330

2nd Place: Military Order of Purple Heart

Youth

1st Place: Cub Scouts Pack 6

2nd Place: Central Arizona Young Marines

Floats

1st Place: Prescott Regulators

2nd Place: Horses with H.E.A.R.T.

Marching Units

1st Place: Ray High School Marine Corps Junior ROTC

2nd Place: Copper State Marine Corps League

Patriotic

1st Place: Flags of Freedom Wave

2nd Place: United Daughters of the Confederacy

Motorcycles/Trikes

1st Place: American Legion Post 6 Riders

2nd Place: High Country BTW Motorcycle Club

Grand Marshall Trophy:

Ray High School Marine Corps Junior ROTC

Lisa Irish
The Daily Courier

Vietnam War veteran Tom Armstrong, who served in the Coast Guard for 30 years, said he attended the Veterans Day parade Friday at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University to show his support for fellow veterans.

"We're here to support the generation before us, the one serving right now, and the ones in the future," Armstrong said.

Armstrong was among the more than 1,000 people at the parade to honor the men and women who have served in our armed forces.

"This seemed like the largest turnout ever," said Ame Callahan, spokeswoman for the Northern Arizona VA Health Care System. "We couldn't have done it without all the help from Embry-Riddle, especially my counterpart Bill Thompson."

Among the people at the parade was World War II veteran Ben Waldo, who flew a B-24 with the Army Air Corps during 45 missions in the Pacific, and shared his story with other parade-goers about how he and other pilots flew missions to take back U.S air bases the Japanese had overtaken.

The American Legion Post 6 Honor Guard kicked off the parade, followed by Embry-Riddle's Army ROTC, the Korean War Veterans Association, the Horses with H.E.A.R.T. float, the Vets Center mobile unit, the Pride of Prescott Marching Band, and many other entries.

John Fairbank, who served with the U.S. Marine Corps during Vietnam, and his wife Ricki said they've always been patriotic and said they came to the parade to show support for veterans.

"Everyone should do it," Fairbank said.

Brent Bombardieri, 7, said he was there to support veterans like his uncle in the Air Force, who flies a C-130H military transport.

"Out of our student body of 1,700 students, we have 260 veterans of the Iraq and Afghan wars," said Dr. Frank Ayers, executive vice president and chief academic officer for Embry-Riddle's Prescott campus, who served 27 years in the Air Force. "We are very privileged to have time with them, we're very proud of their service, and they add so much to our community."

The crowd applauded when Ayers asked those veterans to hold up their hands.

Among them was Terry Willis, president of Embry-Riddle's student veteran organization and the Grand Marshal of the parade. Willis served in the Army for 11 1/2 years, was deployed to Iraq as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom from 2004 to 2005, earned the Purple Heart, and now works closely with the VA to make sure that returning veterans get registered with the VA when they get back for services they've earned, said Jessica Schiefer with the Northern Arizona Veterans Affairs Health Care System.

"For us, every day is Veterans Day," said Donna Jacobs, medical center director of the Northern Arizona VA Health Care System. "Veterans served to preserve our democracy and provide a safe and secure future for generations of Americans."

Jacobs explained that Nov. 11 was originally called Armistice Day, because it was on this day in 1918 that the first World War came to an end and the armistice was signed on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of the year.

Jacobs said that Veterans Day is also her birthday.

"I think it's fitting and appropriate since I serve veterans," said Jacobs, recalling that as a child she was so excited there were parades on her birthday.

Dick Chandler, who served in the U.S. Navy on the USS Hornet during the Korean War, said he and his wife Marge were there to see their granddaughter Amanda Glassford, a senior, perform with the Pride of Prescott Marching Band.

Darcy Razo said she was looking forward to seeing her daughter Erin Razo march with the Girl Scouts.

Torun Bentley, 6, and Haven Bentley, 4, said they couldn't wait to see the Prescott Frontier Days World's Oldest Rodeo queen and princesses.

"One sat by us at the rodeo," their mom Ginger Bentley said.

The horses were the main draw for June Williams, 11, and Megan Stoddard, 11.

Senior Webelo Scout Toby Buettner, 11, said marching in the parade was fun, and that the red poppies his group, the Boy Scouts and the Cub Scouts wore to honor veterans were inspired by the poem "In Flanders Fields." The poem, written by World War I Colonel John McCrae, a surgeon with Canada's First Brigade Artillery, described the bright red poppies blooming among the rows of white crosses marking soldiers' graves on the Flanders battlefields in Belgium.

McCrae's poem inspired Anna E. Guerin of France and Moina Michael in the United States to sell artificial poppies to benefit orphans and others left destitute by the war.

Since then, the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars have distributed poppies in remembrance of veterans on Memorial Day and on Veterans Day.





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Related Stories:
• Photo Gallery: 2011 Prescott Veterans Day Parade


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Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, November 14, 2011
Article comment by: Freedom is not free!

The parade was great!
However, I am glad this is only a one time re-location at the college.
The parade is so much more traditional at the V.A.
The parade felt "misplaced" at the college this year!
Also, parking was a mess, and there were virtually no signs directing where to go.


Posted: Sunday, November 13, 2011
Article comment by: @ attentive listener

Where is this coming from? It is coming from FACT CITY. ... You like most Americans know little about the history of your own country. If you did you would not be so BIASED in favor of it! Your country right or wrong , right AL? The truth hurts and will be held against you. For many Rev. Wright is right.
Attentive listener, Obviously you are not very attentive.


Posted: Sunday, November 13, 2011
Article comment by: @ I like Ike

@ “I like Ike” You asked why we have military campaigns abroad and why more are proposed. I commend your effort to stir our consciousness, which is the best manner to guard against the concerns you mention. Though honestly world power is not the governments, nor those that lobby the governments (though they do have significant influence), but huge multinational originations who own the corporations that also have their profit as the most important point. If we live or die is very little concern to the real seats of power. Patriotism is fantastic, when it is about current events that improve our lives. The founders of this country were extremely patriotic, though that was there life and death struggle for a better life here long ago. Currently most of the public is brain washed and destabilized sheep that are being sheared through long-term economic policy.

Posted: Sunday, November 13, 2011
Article comment by: Attentive Listener

Where is this coming from? Who ARE you, anonymous poster?

Posted: Saturday, November 12, 2011
Article comment by: Mr Maverick

If you cannot find an answer for that question why do you have children?

Posted: Saturday, November 12, 2011
Article comment by: Mindful Mom

Does someone want to handle this question?
On the drive home my ten year old twins ( I forget which asked but they both want to know.) Asked, "The Soldiers who whipped and spat on Jesus then beat him up and nailed him to a cross, should we thank THEM for their service?"


Posted: Saturday, November 12, 2011
Article comment by: Mr Maverick

@ Tim The Veteran This parade is usually done at the VA Hospital FOR the patients. Emery-Riddle was OK but just a substitute due to road work at the VA Hospital. I am sure it will return to its rightful place next year. This parade is for the veterans and the 'forgotten' ones who do not leave the hospital or are there for a stay short or long. I know of one veteran who has been there for over 18 years. It is also a tip o' the hat to the great VA workers who smile while they are overworked and underpaid and take care of grouchy old vets. There are plenty of parades downtown during the year. Everyone is invited to the VA Hospital when it is there. So it mystifies me that so many want this downtown. The Christmas Parade is downtown. It is not hard to find the VA Hospital in Prescott and all are always invited. My personal thanks to all who were involved in this project this year. You all did a great job.

Posted: Saturday, November 12, 2011
Article comment by: Tim the Veteran

If I might ask a stupid question:

Why does not the City of Prescott have a Veteran's Day parade, say, downtown or thereabouts?

Has Prescott become too Californicated to do something so droll as have such a parade?

Just curious.


Posted: Saturday, November 12, 2011
Article comment by: I Like Ike!

Since 1950, the United States has spent more than 20 years at war, with military operations killing more than a hundred thousand Americans, horribly wounding at least five times that number, and consuming several million foreign lives. We have been fighting continuously since 2001 with no end to the violence in sight in Afghanistan. It has cost our country many trillions of dollars of our precious treasure, it has pushed us to the brink of economic collapse. We spend more than six times more on the military than any other country in the world. Military training is based upon a powerful brain-washing breakdown of the rational, good, moral, mind and consists of a very effective rebuilding of this same mind to feel it is OK to dehumanize / kill people, break and destroy their things. If a nation’s survival is at stake then this is a necessary evil. But when these young minds and strong bodies are brainwashed and utilized to do the bidding of multinational corporations and the military-industrial complex, then it is immoral and just plain wrong at every level. Overall, most of the wars that the U.S. has fought have not been justified by the Principle of Last Resort WWII was the exception. Americans are neither gullible dupes nor are we frontier warriors but we have abandoned our usual hard-headed skepticism when asked to support U.S. Military campaigns abroad in the name of patriotism, we must be more skeptical about the real reasons these are being proposed! Is it Oil? Is it power / control? Is it multinational corporate greed?
It’s not too late, we must end American’s unnecessary wars and bridle the military - industrial complex. We must bring all of our troops, ships and bases back home! Remember what Five Star General of the U.S. Army / President Dwight D. Eisenhower stated:
•In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex.
•The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.“Disarmament, with mutual honor and confidence, is a continuing imperative.”
•Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies in the final sense a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.
•I hate war as only a soldier who has lived it can, only as one who has seen its brutality, its futility, its stupidity.
•If men can (have the intelligence to) develop weapons that are so terrifying as to make the thought of global war include almost a sentence for suicide, you would think that man's intelligence and his comprehension... would include also his ability to find a peaceful solution.
Lets honor these good folks by bringing all of them back safely, provide them an excellent education and job training and construct an economy which creates excellent lifelong careers / jobs. Then lets try, from now on, Ike’s last idea! I like Ike!




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