Importance of veterans’ stories highlighted at annual program


Kayla Trent

Veterans share stories following the annual Veterans Day program at Vincennes University on Nov. 8.

Kayla Trent, Assitant Editor

Vincennes University paid honor to those who have served their country during the annual Veterans Day program. The event took place on Nov. 8 in the Red Skelton Performing Arts Center.

The Lincoln High School JROTC performed the Posting of Colors. Dr. Charles Johnson, VU’s president, gave a warm welcome to everyone in attendance.

Children from Civitan Children’s Center led the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance, as well as performed two patriotic songs.

Scott Shipman, administrative director of Christian Campus Fellowship, led the crowd in a brief prayer.

Bill Gollmitzer, law enforcement professor and military veteran, gave a brief speech. He discussed the importance of students and those of the younger generation being willing to speak with veterans. He encouraged students to speak with some of the veterans in attendance after the program.

“They can learn from you, and you can learn from them,” Gollmitzer said.

Dr. Randy K. Mills gave an emotional speech in honor of veterans. Mills, a professor at Oakland City University, has published many books and articles on Indiana history and Midwest history.

Mills made reference to veterans and those currently serving, noting the importance of collecting their stories.

“Every time they put on that uniform, they become a sacred part of American history,” he said.

Mills also read excerpts of letters written by U.S. soldiers fighting in the Korean War. The letters gave vivid details about what it was like for soldiers from Indiana to serve in harsh conditions so far from home.

Next, a video entitled “I Fought For You” was played. Its theme was helping the younger generation to have a deeper appreciation for veterans.

The Lincoln High School JROTC performed the Recognition of Veterans and the Colors Retired.

The All-Weather Firing Squad performed the 21-Gun Salute and Taps. As soon as Taps began to play, the entire audience stood in remembrance of fallen soldiers.

Shipman closed the program with a prayer.

A reception followed the event, with many veterans sharing stories and memories of their military service.