Brig. Gen. Patrick R. Michaelis, Fort Jackson commanding general, gives a
fist bump to a child during the City of Columbia’s Veterans Day Parade 
Nov. 11. Michaelis attended multiple events across the city during the
holiday. (Photo by Nate Clinebelle)
1 / 2 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Brig. Gen. Patrick R. Michaelis, Fort Jackson commanding general, gives a
fist bump to a child during the City of Columbia’s Veterans Day Parade
Nov. 11. Michaelis attended multiple events across the city during the
holiday. (Photo by Nate Clinebelle) (Photo Credit: U.S. Army)
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Elementary students, staff and parents from Fort Jackson’s C.C. Pinckney and Pierce Terrace Elementary Schools march during the annual Veterans Day Parade through downtown Columbia, SC Nov. 12. More than 250 Soldiers, cadre, command teams, students and staff marched in the parade to show their gratitude to local area veterans for their service to the nation.
2 / 2 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Elementary students, staff and parents from Fort Jackson’s C.C. Pinckney and Pierce Terrace Elementary Schools march during the annual Veterans Day Parade through downtown Columbia, SC Nov. 12. More than 250 Soldiers, cadre, command teams, students and staff marched in the parade to show their gratitude to local area veterans for their service to the nation. (Photo Credit: Alexandra Shea) VIEW ORIGINAL

“Today marks a momentous day in our American story as we honor great men and women who have stepped forward to defend our nation,” said Brig. Gen. Patrick R. Michaelis, Fort Jackson commanding general. “On the 11th hour on the 11th day in the 11th month in 1918, the guns fell silent as an armistice came into being. In that moment the great war we know as World War I that had raged from 1914 until 1918 ended.”

Michaelis kicked off Fort Jackson’s support of local area Veteran’s Day events by speaking to University of South Carolina alumni and veteran student body during a breakfast hosted by the university at Russel Hall Nov. 11.

Service members of all branches representing conflict eras as far back as the Vietnam War were treated to a full spread of hot and fresh breakfast items to celebrate and show thanks for their service to the nation and its people.

Michaelis, the 282nd Army Band and others from the Fort Jackson community met the South Carolina National Guard Adjutant General Maj. Gen. Van McCarthy downtown to march in the annual Veteran’s Day parade.

McCarthy led the parade and was followed closely by Michaelis, the band, more than 250 Soldiers and cadre members, and students from Pierce Terrace and C.C. Pickney Elementary Schools to show their appreciation and support to the many veterans that lined Assembly Street.

“If I could say something to our veterans I would say thank you for paving the way for people like myself. On behalf of myself and everyone here, we are going to finish the race you have already started,” said Spc. Kelly Smith, a human resources specialist assigned to the 369th Adjutant General Battalion. “Once a service member, always a service member. I am happy to be a part of this Family.”

Despite the sprinkling of rain, the parade made its way through downtown to the routes end near the Columbia State House. Though the parade successfully concluded, the day of events were far from over.

Retired Vice National Commodore of the Coast Guard Auxiliary George Jeandheur salutes the American flag as it is presented during the start of the Garden Club of South Carolina Veterans Day Recognition Ceremony  held Nov. 11. The ceremony was held at the Garden Club’s Memorial Garden on Lincoln Street to honor the service and sacrifices of veterans.
Retired Vice National Commodore of the Coast Guard Auxiliary George Jeandheur salutes the American flag as it is presented during the start of the Garden Club of South Carolina Veterans Day Recognition Ceremony held Nov. 11. The ceremony was held at the Garden Club’s Memorial Garden on Lincoln Street to honor the service and sacrifices of veterans. (Photo Credit: Alexandra Shea) VIEW ORIGINAL

Restaurants and stores across the city offered Soldiers and veterans meals free of charge and discounts while shopping locally.

Further into the heart of Columbia, Michaelis, the 282nd Army Band and a color guard team composed of drill sergeants attended another event hosted by the Garden Club of South Carolina’s Memorial Garden on Lincoln Street.

The garden, establish in 1945, honors World War II veterans, is adorned with a fountain, bricks bearing the names and branches of those veterans and loved ones who were killed in action during the war and overlooked by a statue of a Saint Francis of Assisi.

“Our Soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines are guardians representing the very best our nation has to offer,” Michaelis said. “They carry on the proud legacy and traditions of American veterans who have kept us free. We say thanks to them all.”