We honored our veterans this week with a parade and various ceremonies in a county that is blessed with a large number of these patriots who always seem to be close by to help us with these celebrations. The names Dale Punch and J.C. Rudisill are among those that immediately come to mind when we gather for these events. A special thanks to Rudisill and the Lincoln County Veterans Council for helping organize this yearâ€™s parade. Grand Marshall this year was George Ennis Baxter Sr., a lifetime member of the 26th Infantry Regiment and the First Infantry Division, who also belongs to that core group of vets who work behind the scenes on so many patriotic events.
Across the nation there are more than 25 million veterans who risked their lives while serving in conflicts that include World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam, the Persian Gulf, and the war on terror. They risked their lives so that the liberties we have protected for more than two centuries will survive.
This year a number of World War II veterans from our area have visited the new memorial in Washington, which has received excellent reviews. For those who have not made the visit, we would urge you to consider it. The memorial has most meaning to those who experienced that war first hand.
Especially important in our thoughts and prayers during this Veterans Day observance are the members of the Battery C, our Lincolnton-based National Guard unit of some 100 men and women now assigned to Iraq. So far that unit has been spared any casualties though assignments have often been close to areas of high conflict. We stand with their families in the expectation of a safe return in the early part of next year. They too will become part of this wonderful brotherhood of veterans that has blessed our nation since its birth.