USAG Ansbach, American Legion celebrate Veterans Day at 12th CAB HQ
By Mr. Bryan Gatchell (IMCOM)November 8, 2013
ANSBACH, Germany (Nov. 8, 2013) -- U.S. Army Garrison Ansbach and American Legion David Chavez Post 1982 hosted a Veterans Day ceremony at the Memorial Park at 12th Combat Aviation Brigade headquarters Nov. 7. Soldiers, Family members, civilians and members of the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars attended the event.
Master Sgt. Christopher Buchanan, the American Legion Post 1982 commander, delivered the keynote address at the ceremony.
"Those of us gathered here to observe Veterans Day know that we love [veterans]," said Buchanan. "We appreciate them. We are grateful for their service. We are their friends, their family, their coworkers and their neighbors. It is up to us to ensure that every veteran feels that his or her service to this country is appreciated by their fellow Americans."
Part of Buchanan's message was to help veterans in need by directing them to the resources they need.
"If he is showing signs of unhappiness or depression, encourage him to seek help through the VA immediately," said Buchanan. "If she has had difficulty obtaining the benefits that she is entitled to, let her know that the American Legion has thousands of trained service officers nationwide that will help her navigate the VA office free of charge."
The event also included an invocation by William Wight, the American Legion post's chaplain, and the laying of the wreaths by members of the American Legion and the VFW. Wight also read the poem "In Flanders Fields," in recognition of Veterans Day's origin in the World War I. The color guard from the Ansbach High School Junior ROTC posted the colors.
Col. Christopher Benson, USAG Ansbach and Franconia Military Community commander, closed out the ceremony.
"It is truly an honor to be here, and it is a privilege as a veteran to say a few words about Veterans Day," said Benson.
Benson reminded the audience that Veterans Day is the anniversary of the interment of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.
"It remains our duty to ensure that the sacrifice of that unknown Soldier and the sacrifice of all Americans who gave their lives in the name of freedom and liberty were not in vain," said Benson. "It actually comes down to one sentence, one phrase that you can never hear too often in a democracy: Freedom is not free."