YONGSAN GARRISON, South Korea (Nov. 12, 2013) - The top U.S. Army operational commander in South Korea thanked veterans at a ceremony here, Nov. 11.

Eighth Army Commanding General Lt. Gen. Bernard S. Champoux spoke at the Veterans Day ceremony at the Eighth Army Memorial.

Along with other senior U.S. military leaders and veterans, Eighth Army Deputy Commander for Operations Maj. Gen. Walter Golden, Eighth Army Deputy Commander for Sustainment Brig. Gen. Chris Gentry and Eighth Army Command Sgt. Maj. Ray Devens also attended the ceremony.

"I believe it is appropriate that we gather at the Eighth Army Memorial," said Champoux, who also serves as the chief of staff for United Nations Command, Combined Forces Command and U.S. Forces Korea. "Every day of the year as we go through our busy lives on Yongsan, this memorial stands in silent tribute to the young warriors who stopped Communist aggression in Korea."

"It is also a stark reminder of the important mission that U.S. Forces Korea accomplishes to this day," said Champoux, a native of Pittsfield, Mass.

On the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War, Champoux thanked all of the Vietnam Veterans in the audience.

Champoux also paid tribute to America's fallen heroes.

The Eighth Army commanding general said the best way for U.S. troops to honor fallen veterans is by upholding their legacy of service.

"We owe them a debt of gratitude that can never be re-paid," said Champoux.

"But we can honor them by continuing to tell their story," he said. "We can honor them by fully embracing the freedom that they gave their lives for. And we can honor them with our own service ... because the best way to thank our veterans is to faithfully and honorably finish what they started.