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Veterans Day Highlights

Today is Veterans Day and about 75 people turned out for a flag-raising ceremony at SMS. The event was moved indoors because of rain. KSMU's Missy Shelton produced this sound portrait that begins with the National Anthem and remarks from Captain Mark Stillwell, a retired member of the Navy and the SMS Sports Information Director.

Mark Stillwell: There's a special bond among veterans that transcends age, rank, your brach of service and where and when and what you did. Call it patriotism, love of country, doing your duty, it is simply having the belief that what you're doing is right. Otherwise, why do it?

David Liss: I was in the Marine Corps. I was training here in the state for people going to Operation Desert Storm.

Phil Nichols: I was build second class United States Navy Seabees. I spent 13 months in a place called Vietnam.

Liss: You spend a short time with some of those people and they become closer to you than some of the people you spend most of your time with. It makes me wish I could hook back up with those guys.

Nichols: There are a lot of sad stories when you do. I've been doing that for three years and there's been a lot of sad stories, people who came back who took their life, people who are disfunctional today, aren't doing well in life.

Liss: We need to remember those who are over there now, in harms way for us.

Nichols: The people who are in Iraq, putting it all on the line so we can enjoy freedom from fear of terrorism here in this country.

Michelle Dillow: I'm a member of the Army National Guard, the 220th Engineer Company. Actually, we're getting ready to leave for Iraq. We activate in January and get over there in May. I'm excited, ready to go. A lot of people don't agree with the war but they don't put down veterans like they did in Vietnam. They're giving vets these days more support. They know we're doing our jobs. I hope people realize how much vets give to secure the freedom we all cherish. I want everyone to remember that.

Edwin Fairchild: I was a tank commander when I left the Army. I want people to take a minute and think about how people have worked hard in ways they'll never understand and were prepared to die if it was necessary. For the ones who came back, shake their hand and buy them a cup of coffee and for the ones who didn't, stop and think about that.

**Sound of a trumpet playing Taps.**