National D-Day Memorial honors veterans and soldiers

President Harry Truman once said, “Our debt to the heroic men and valiant women in the service of our country can never be repaid. They have earned our undying gratitude.” 

The 75th Anniversary of D-Day is held at the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford, VA on Thursday June 6, 2019. (Photo by KJ Jugar)

Angela Lynch, the associate director of marketing for the National D-Day Memorial, promotes Bedford, Virginia’s annual Veteran’s Day event at the Memorial, happening this Friday, Nov. 11, from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. According to Lynch’s press release, the city of Bedford suffered “the highest-known, per capita D-Day loss in the Nation.” As such, the National D-Day Memorial activities commemorate “the valor, fidelity and sacrifice of the Allied Forces on June 6, 1944 by preserving the lessons and legacy of D-Day.” 

Lynch said that Maj. Gen. Antonio Munera will be the keynote speaker at the event. 

“When selecting a keynote speaker, we look for someone who will inspire the audience,” Lynch said. “This Veterans Day we are pleased to welcome Major General Antonio (Andy) Munera, Commanding General of the U.S. Army Cadet Command, to deliver the keynote address, as we salute our veterans with the help of the veterans of the future: current-day ROTC cadets.”

Maj. Gen. Munera exceeds Lynch’s qualifications. Lynch’s press release stated that Munera “leads Cadet Command’s mission to select, educate, train and commission college students to be officers and leaders of character in the Total Army and form partnerships with high schools to conduct JROTC programs to develop citizens of character for a lifetime of commitment and service to the Nation.” The ROTC cadets will be comprised of juniors and seniors who will also be part of the ceremony. 

Margaret G. Kibben, Chief of Chaplains U.S. Navy (retired), reads historical excerpts at the 75th Anniversary of D-Day, held at the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford, VA on Thursday June 6, 2019. (Photo by KJ Jugar)

One of several overseas missions Munera completed includes deployment to “Iraq in 2015 as part of Operation Inherent Resolve, advising the Iraqi government on security sector reform.”

“The Memorial observes Veterans Day with a ceremony on our main plaza, held each November 11, at 11 a.m.,” Lynch explained. “Veterans in attendance are recognized. Additionally, we dedicate veteran bricks each Veterans Day and Memorial Day.” 

While the event centers around the keynote speaker, the National D-Day Memorial holds other events that honor America’s veterans. This Veterans Day is the 25th anniversary of the Memorial’s groundbreaking on Nov. 11, 1997. 

Information on the celebration is available here.  

Araujo is a feature reporter for the Liberty Champion

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