El Pasoans honor military with bronzed tribute at airport
October 21, 2010
EL PASO, Texas - Fort Bliss Soldiers commonly feel supported by the El Paso community, and now there's a new way it can be seen. Bliss troops joined civic leaders and the greater El Paso business community for the dedication of a military tribute monument at the El Paso International Airport, Oct. 18.
The unveiling of the 700-pound pedestal, funded by The Louis and Miriam Rosenbaum Foundation, was the culmination of two years of cooperation between its benefactors, the city, and the Bliss military community.
Since 1993 the foundation has supported military organizations such as the USO, many veterans' advocate groups, and more than 200 other charities. Louis Rosenbaum, the foundation's founder and a prominent El Paso businessman, said the love his family and the city of El Paso has for servicemembers and their families runs deep.
"The men and women who wear our nation's uniforms deserve our deepest respect, gratitude, and extreme appreciation for their unselfish and courageous service," said Rosenbaum, "and let us not forget about the families that are left behind. We thank all members of the various services for the sacrifices they have made and are making so that future generations may live in peace and freedom. We, the citizens of El Paso and of this great country, owe the biggest thanks anyone could ever bestow upon [servicemembers]."
Brig. Gen. Stephen Twitty, Bliss' deputy commanding general, formally represented the post for the ceremony and shared a heartfelt thanks for the type of support El Paso has shown the military for generations. "The achievements and hard work of the men and women of the armed forces give a true meaning of democracy that shapes this country," said Twitty, "and you the community play a huge role in the success of our mission."
With many military-friendly services offered every day, Twitty also made a point to credit airport officials for making their City of El Paso-run airport a welcome haven for his troops and other servicemembers.
Soldiers from A Battery, 1st Battalion, 43rd Air Defense Artillery, 11th ADA Brigade, paraded the colors during the afternoon ceremony. Soldiers from the 62nd Army Band were also on hand to provide patriotic music, fitting for the event, which honored those who Rosenbaum called the new "Greatest Generation," America's servicemembers.
The pedestal will be located by the military information desk in the main concourse.
"The dedication of this podium represents duty, service and sacrifice," said Twitty. "On behalf of all the branches of the military which come and go through this facility, you honor us with this special tribute."