By Anne Eickstadt

ANNE EICKSTADT PHOTO Belvidere Republican
Congressman Adam Kinzinger was the featured speaker for Belvidere High School’s Veteran’s Day assembly on Friday, Nov. 9.

The Friday before Veterans Day was the date set for a special assembly at the Belvidere High School with Congressman Adam Kinzinger as the guest speaker.

The assembly began at 11 a.m. with special seating set up for invited guests, Veterans, and local dignitaries. Principal Billy Lewis called everyone to order and Steve Anderson played the bagpipes as an Honor Guard carried in flags for the United States and each branch of the military. All the notables were recognized and Veterans were asked to stand as their branch of the military’s song was performed. The Belvidere High School Choraliers sang several songs throughout the event and did a wonderful job.

Congressman Adam Kinzinger was the keynote speaker.

Their hope was that in 20, 30, 50 years, or so, an attempt at independence would succeed.

He spoke of Lincoln and the Civil War as he attempted to hold the country together. His grandfather served in the Great War, yet did not speak of his experiences until 2011. The Korean War, the Viet Nam War, the war in Iraq were all mentioned. 9-11 was a defining moment for Kinzinger as that was what prompted him to enlist in the Air Force. Kinzinger said he wished he would have had the opportunity to discuss his war experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan with his grandfather, now deceased.

“This country still needs defending,” he said. “In this country you can determine your own future because our military gives you that

ANNE EICKSTADT PHOTO Belvidere Republican
The Veterans in the Rolling Thunder Motorcycle Club did a wonderful job of displaying and explaining the Missing Man Table at the Belvidere High School Veterans Day assembly.

right. Our military personnel hope they don’t have to, but they are ready to put their lives on the line for this country.”

The event continued with Veterans of the Rolling Thunder Motorcycle Club explaining the Missing Man Table, a ceremony which is frequently performed on Veterans Day. This MIA/POW table was set for five – one place for each branch of the military.

“The Empty Chair will remain empty until every one of the people who are still Missing In Action from every war are accounted for.”

“The best way to honor a Veteran is to live a life worthy of their sacrifice.”

For complete article, pick up the Nov. 15 Belvidere Republican.

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