City, university honors veterans

By Gus Bode

Cold November winds couldn’t keep veterans from taking part in ceremonies throughout Carbondale Tuesday.

Starting at 11 a.m., roughly 100 veterans and supporters bundled up to take part in Veterans Day ceremonies both on and off campus Tuesday.

David Conrad, a Korean War veteran and retired SIUC professor, was the keynote speaker at the Memorial Wall Service in the Town Square Pavilion, where nearly 50 veterans and family members gathered.


‘ Conrad said Veterans Day ceremonies are about honoring the soldiers who serve the United States and remembering those who gave their lives to do so.

‘We feel proud and we like doing it,’ Conrad said.

Air Force and Army ROTC also presented a Veterans Day ceremony at the Old Main Flagpole in front of Altgeld Hall at noon. The ceremony was preceded by a 24-hour silent vigil where ROTC cadets, in shifts of two, silently stood to honor all people who have served their country.

‘Our purpose in organizing and holding this vigil is to pay special attention to those who have come before us and to let America’s veterans know that we will never forget all that they have done for us,’ said Jerad Romine, a sophomore from Normal studying administration of justice and an Army ROTC cadet.

Interim Chancellor Sam Goldman said Veterans Day is a time to be grateful to the men and women in uniform for all that they have done, and continue to do, for the United States.

‘It’s a great honor to be a part of this,’ Goldman said. ‘We are forever indebted to those who have paid the ultimate price.’

Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Carl Hunsinger, the keynote speaker, said all veterans share a willingness to die to defend the United States and that oath should be appreciated through more than words.


‘Without our veterans, America would not be America,’ Hunsinger said. ‘When a member of congress complains about the cost of veterans programs, remind the lawmaker that it costs to be a veteran.’

Capt. Curtis Puckett of the Air Force ROTC said the most important part of Veterans Day is remembering the people who have served in the past. Just taking some time out of the day to remember them means a lot, he said.

Puckett said veterans from all eras share a special, unspoken bond between them.

‘It’s a bond, an admiration, that you have for each other,’ Puckett said.

Madeleine Leroux can be reached at 536-3311 ext. 274 or [email protected].