Mid-Michigan Honors Veterans Day

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LANSING -- Across Mid-Michigan -- countless shows of pride and gratitude this Veterans Day for America's military heroes.

"It's always the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month," says Graydon Briggs, who served in the Korean War and helped organize a memorial event Friday in Grand Ledge. "Beause that's when the armistice was signed in Germany to end World War I with Germany."

The events to celebrate abounded.

-In Mason -- the annual Veterans Day Parade, replete with a drum line, a handful of World War II veterans and the Mason High School marching band, winding from the Ingham County fairgrounds to downtown.

"We're honoring all of the living, as well as those veterans who have passed away," said one onlooker.

--In Lansing -- Michigan National Guard commander Maj. Gen. Gregory Vadnais addressed the rotary club, noting the guard's mission won't change with the end of the war in Iraq.

"Our mission will continue to be as it always has been: To be trained and ready; always there, always available," Vadnais said.

-In DeWitt -- Michigan's youth, from a gathering at the high school to a performance put on my elementary students, gathered to pay their respects to our veterans.

-In Grand Ledge -- a dedication at Oakwood Cemetery to add 17 new names to the Vietnam War Veterans Memorial.

"On the one pillar is all those local men who've died in combat throughout the 16 wars we've fought in," said Richard Cupp, who served in both Vietnam and Desert Storm.

Fitting tributes across the area to so many men and women who protect this country -- even with their lives.

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