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Yalobushians Recognize Veteran’s Sacrifices

Let Us Not Forget – Onlookers paid their respects as the flag was lowered to half-staff during Tuesday’s Veterans Day observance. VFW 4100 Post Commander Joe Gross (foreground) presided over the ceremony. On the right is Nathan Swanson who will leave for duty in Afghanistan in May.

Renasant Bank held a reception last Thursday to honor members of the military and their families. Current service members as well as veterans were entertained. Here WWII vet Jim Oakley (right) is served cake by bank employee Glenda Griffith. – Photo by Jack Gurner

By Jack Gurner

WATER VALLEY – A sprinkling of rain fell on about 35 people who gathered at the Veterans Monument in Railroad Park Tuesday to honor those who have served their country.

“A little rain doesn’t bother us,” said Bobbie Roberson of Courtland, district head of the VFW Auxiliary as she remembered stories from veterans who had to sleep in foxholes in the pouring rain.

Earlier, Representative Tommy Reynolds spoke about the sacrifices made by America’s veterans. He said that every American should show respect for those who protect our freedom now, and in the past.

“Let us not forget,” Reynolds said.

Reynolds was introduced by VFW Post 4100 Commander Joe Gross who presided over the ceremony.

Special recognition was given to Water Valley native Nathan Swanson, who will be leaving for Afghanistan in May. He is a member of the 877th Engineering Battalion, a National Guard unit based in Hamiliton, Ala.

Swanson, 48, is the son of Jewel and the late James Swanson. He is currently finishing his studies at Harding University Graduate School of Religion in Memphis. He will graduate in May before leaving for his assignment.

Elsewhere in the nation, President Bush was in New York to rededicate the Intrepid museum in honor of Veterans Day, at the aircraft carrier’s newly rebuilt pier on Manhattan’s West Side.

President-elect Barack Obama was in Chicago where he placed a wreath at a memorial to fallen U.S. soldiers alongside Illinois Veterans Affairs Director Tammy Duckworth, an Iraq War veteran who lost both legs in combat.

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