Veterans and Goshen residents were disappointed to learn that the Veteran’s Day ceremony on Nov. 11 was cancelled due to a weather report calling for heavy rains and high winds.
Although the event didn’t happen this year, it doesn’t mean that veterans couldn’t be remembered and honored.
“Veterans Day is to thank and honor all those that have served in our country’s armed forces,” said Jim Heslop, Commander of the Goshen American Post 377, in his prepared, but undelivered, speech. “On this day we commemorate the service of all veterans; we remember how many of them set aside their civilian pursuits to serve their nation’s cause, defending the freedom of our American Heritage and freedom for all people wherever they live.”
Each year on the eleventh day, of the eleventh month at 11:00 a.m.—marking the signing of the Armistice ending World War I-Heslop leads the ceremony as the moderator. In past years, the ceremony included the national anthem, the Pledge of Alliance, an invocation, and speakers presenting personal thoughts on the importance of Veteran’s Day.
In his prepared, but undelivered speech, Ray Quattrini, Commander of Goshen Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1708, asks all “to celebrate and venerate America’s military veterans who in every war since this country began have given testimony to their loyalty, to their country and their unselfish courage. They are the men and women who made our freedom possible. They have earned the distinction and honor to be called America’s heroes.”
World War I was called “The War to End All Wars,” but as Quattrini points out, in less than 20-years, America was once more in major combat.
“In the 20th Century alone, there were more than 30 wars of significance that took the lives of millions of combatants and millions more innocent civilians.” he said, then asks, “Has man’s ability to devise new ways of killing one another outstripped his propensity to live in peace?”
Quattrini is looking to a brighter future: “I wonder, will there ever come the day when there are no longer veterans to honor? Celebrate this day only to revere the memory. Not because time has called them all to rest, but because our resolution for peace has come to fruition and man’s inhumanity to man has become just another day of the past.”