Paying tribute to the service the military veterans have provided to the United States and its citizens was the theme of the official Vinton County Veterans Day Celebration event.
The program took place Saturday morning, Nov. 11 on the courthouse steps in McArthur. It was emceed by County Court Judge James Salyer, who also holds the rank of captain in the U.S. Army. Also playing a part in the program was Vinton County Probate-Juvenile Judge Bob Grillo, who read the list of Vinton County's war dead. Also, Abby Owings sang The Star-Spangled Banner and members of the McArthur Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 5299 fired a 21-gun salute.
Captain Salyer stated, "Veterans Day is important to honor the 25 million veterans who are still alive." He added it should have the same value as Memorial Day in May where the war dead are specifically honored and remembered.
Salyer also pointed out the fact it takes dedication to leave home, family and civilian jobs to participate in military service.
"Our soliders fight in lands they do not know and fight for people they never met," Salyer declared. "It was this same type of dedication that inspired myself to sign up for military duty. Serving in the Army was one of the best times of my life."
During his part of the program, Judge Grillo read the 97 names of the county's war dead and noted several names have been added lately. "We have 97 war dead in the county and we honor them today," said Grillo.
Grillo also thanked the Boy Scout, Cub Scout and Girl Scout troops for attending the program. The Cub Scouts participated in the program by raising the flag.
The program concluded with the 21-gun salute and the opportunity for residents to ring the county's official bell as a public way to salute or remember a veteran. Salyer thanked everyone for coming and reminded everyone to thank a veteran for their service.