Vietnam Veterans Day, a day set aside to recognize the approximately 300,000 veterans who served during that war, will be marked locally Saturday at the Louis Berkman Amphitheater at Historic Fort Steuben.
Hosted by AMVETS Post 275 and set for noon, we're asking area residents to spend a brief period of their day showing support for our local Vietnam veterans.
The day represents the first day all U.S. combat troops were out of the country after the signing of the Paris Peace Accords in 1973.
Most important, the event will serve as a memorial to those who fought, died or are still unaccounted for in the Vietnam War.
However, other activities are planned, such a U.S. flag re-posting at the fort by members of the Tri-State Young Marines. According to Steubenville Mayor Domenick Mucci, who is slated to offer opening remarks, "the day is celebrated in March, and spring is the season of renewal ... This also will help to renew our commitment to honor those who served in and during the Vietnam War."
AMVETS Post Commander Dan Wilson said the event also will include a poem, "written by an aviator who was killed in action in Vietnam."
Others scheduled to take part will be Schelley Brooks, executive director of the Jefferson County Veterans Service Commission, who will read the poem, and Jefferson County Commission Thomas Graham, who will sing the national anthem.
However, as it should be, local veterans will take center stage at the ceremony. They will be honored for their courage and determination while fighting the war, but also they should be recognized for their contributions in being a driving force behind the amount of respect given to today's veterans.
If possible, please plan to show your support Saturday to, certainly, some of the most deserving citizens in the Tri-State Area.