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Weirton honors its veterans

WREATHS AND REMEMBRANCE — Close to a dozen wreaths were brought to the Millsop Community Center, and presented by area organizations as part of Veterans Day services held Monday in Weirton. -- Craig Howell

WEIRTON — With the ringing of the Bells of Peace, at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, the people of Weirton gathered to honor the men and women who have served their country.

A service was held Monday morning in the Weirton Room of the Millsop Community Center, recognizing veterans past and present and their contributions to the world.

Jack Newbrough, who served in the U.S. Navy from 1990 to 1994, including stints on the USS Joseph and the USS Daniels, with tours in the Mediterranean and South America, was the guest speaker, noting Monday marked the 100th year of the observance of Veterans Day.

“Veterans Day is my favorite holiday, even more than Christmas and Thanksgiving,” Newbrough said, explaining it provides an opportunity to highlight the service of those who have been a part of the nation’s military.

He reflected on the response of the nation to those who served in Vietnam upon their return home, which he said currently includes 6.7 million Americans. He encouraged residents to remember the service of those in uniform, no matter the branch and no matter the time, and to thank them.

The Rev. Gary Lilly recited a poem titled “Veteran, for Everything You’ve Done,” which he dedicated to his father, who served during World War II and Korea, as well as all veterans.

Mayor Harold Miller also was on hand to express gratitude to those who have put on a military uniform, explaining the work the city has done in recent years to honor them.

“Four years ago, at the beginning of my first term, we started recognizing a veteran at each council meeting,” Miller said, noting this year the city began to offer a “Last Call,” in memory of those veterans from Weirton who recently had died.

He also noted the support of veterans from the community with the banner program which began in recent years.

“We were hoping for 50 or 60 and we got 300,” Miller said of the program offered through VFW Post 2716.

Ward 4 Councilman George Ash, a past commander of the VFW, served as master of ceremonies, asking veterans in the audience to stand and be recognized. That included one man from World War II, at least three from Korea, and others from Vietnam and Iraq.

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