American Legion remembers sacrifices

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American Legion Post 89 in Seymour remembered those who served in this country’s armed forces Sunday during one of several Veterans Day programs planned in the community.

The Rev. Gary Dyer of Seymour Harvest Church spoke to those in attendance about the sacrifices veterans have made for their country throughout the years.

“They did their part. Now it’s up to us to do ours,” Dyer said.

Post commander Jack Schrader said the post at 402 W. Second St. has conducted a Veterans Day event since the holiday was introduced.

The history of Veterans Day stretches to the early part of the 20th century. President Woodrow Wilson first proclaimed Armistice Day for Nov. 11, 1919, to commemorate those who served during World

War I.

Later, the idea was expanded to annually celebrate all veterans. U.S. Representative Ed Rees presented a bill to Congress establishing the Armistice Day holiday. The bill was signed into law by President Dwight D. Eisenhower on May 26, 1954.

On June 1 of that year, it was amended by Congress, replacing “Armistice” with “Veterans.”

Schrader said it is important to show thanks to veterans.

“We have to honor the men and women who fight for our rights,” Schrader said. “If we didn’t have veterans, we wouldn’t have the country we have now.”

As a veteran who served during the Vietnam War, Dyer said it’s an honor for him to be able to remember those he served with and others who made sacrifices while serving in the military.

“I don’t want people to forget,” Dyer said. “War is ugly. I want people to think about what it cost to enjoy the freedoms bought by those of us who served.”

Dyer said he’s from a military family.

He said his father fought the Japanese in World War II; he fought in Vietnam, and he said his two sons fought in Iraq.

“We’re a military family all the way from the Civil War to today,” Dyer said.

Dyer said events such as the one Sunday at the Legion help veterans know there are people who care. As veterans, he said it’s important to see people care.

“You want people to know you’re proud of what you did and to not forget the cost,” Dyer said. “You know people care because of their actions.”

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