Opinion

Opinion | Every day is Veterans Day

We all witnessed some amazing things at last Friday’s Snoqualmie Valley Veterans Memorial Dedication.

The sight of every head tilting up to watch uniformed young people; the sound of a bell ringing for every fallen local veteran; the scent of burning sage, during a Snoqualmie Tribal blessing; reverent silence as four older veterans unveiled the great stone.

Then there was the crowd. I’ve seen larger gatherings at festivals and graduations, of course, but the sight of more than 300 people crowding into around a small park and overflowing onto the street, all for this long-awaited occasion, was impressive.

Such a crowd has long been a rarity at a local Veterans or Memorial Day gathering at our local cemeteries and monuments. Too often, these patriotic holidays become simply days off. But as several speakers last week reminded us, every day should be Veterans Day.

Reflect for a moment on the names of the 70-plus men and women with Valley roots who died in the cause of their nation. Their valor changed not only their own lives, but their families, and the greater Valley, sometimes intangibly, sometimes dramatically.

Civic leaders on Friday asked everyone to reflect on their sacrifice, and its meaning: That we can all aspire to the American spirit, put aside our differences, and share that spirit with others.

When you read the names below, and when you visit the new memorial park—as you should—please think about the people listed below, and about what it means to be an American. As we move out of one breathless season of politics, economics and change, here in our Valley and far beyond, and into another, keep that in mind in your dealings with those around you.

World War I

Arthur William Lyford, Battista Pasini, David Renton, Edward Clements Koester, Peter Erickson, Alfred Parenti, Bert Smith, William Swen, Carl Larson, Albert Emery, Lester Pickering, Virgil Detrick

World War II

Richard Dunn, George Webb-Venniksen, William Hronek, Jr., Bernard Briggs, William Borden, Lloyd Scheel, Jack Dubey, Frank Martindale, Jr., Harvey Kierstins, Rodney Boalch, Roy Hackney, Victor Hartley, Elizabeth Erickson, Herman James Jensen, Vincent Robel, Loyal Bright, Clarence Church, Robert White, Norman Christiansen, Eugene Smith, James O’Neil, Donald Olson,Charles Scheuchzer, Thomas Soister, Robert Hatcher, Claude Brown Stephenson, James Machan,  Leo Harry McGrath, Lawrence Carmichael, Theron White, Dean Aschin, F.O. Goebel, Carol Cameron, James Kennedy, Jack Odlin, Joe Sheppard, Martin James, James Arthur Barber, Richard Carol Hall, Lawrence Crotts, Lloyd Eugene Hume

Korea

William Scott, John Carlson, Gordon Bothell, Albert Barfuse, Charles Englehart, Donald B. Cameron

Vietnam

Donald Gene Davenport, Robert Allen Montgomery, Timothy Demos, James David Nansel, James Sanders, Ronald James Johnson, Larry Michael Heen, Joe Sweetman

Iraqi-Afghanistan

Coby G. Schwab, Corry Paul Tyler, Eric Levi Ward

You can see more coverage of the Veteran's Memorial dedication at http://www.valleyrecord.com/news/133721963.html

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