By Mark Ross
A large crowd gathered at Hempstead Hall on Veterans Day to honor local veterans. The Hope High School Air Force JROTC opened the program with posting of the colors, followed by Master Sergeant Michael Magee leading the Pledge of Allegiance and Arnetta Bradford singing the National Anthem.
Master of Ceremony Bob Willis welcomed the those attending. Willis started the program by welcoming on stage Huck Plyler. Nine-year-old Plyler has been instrumental in starting a care package program for local veterans serving overseas.
Willis then introduced and honored several Gold Star families, that have lost family members in recent years.
The HAPS East Lab members Madison Phillips, Madelyne Maclaughin and Grace Easterling showed a video they edited themselves in honor of veterans.
Willis then introduced the guest speaker, the Area Director at Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Eric Akin. Akin’s topic was the honor and privilege of watching the rising of the American Flag and the singing of the National Anthem at different events, including the Friday night ball games.
The event was sponsored by the following local civic organizations, Noon Lions, Evening Lions, Kiwanas, Rotary and Civitan.