Over 30 Vietnam War veterans from Lake Havasu City were welcomed home on Wednesday morning.
To follow up March 29’s Vietnam Veterans Day Outdoor Cookout, local and statewide individuals brainstormed a way to further recognize Havasu’s veterans. Organized in part by Ronald Williams of Humana, Sandra Powers of Powers Insurance Solutions, and Havasu residents Randy and Debbie Nelson was Wednesday’s Vietnam Era Pinning Ceremony.
A majority of the veterans invited currently attend the Stonebridge Veterans Coffee Time that is hosted by the Nelsons each Wednesday morning at Breakwater Grill.
The ceremony officially recognized 35 Vietnam War veterans in front of their relatives and other community supporters. Another 16 veterans who were not present at the ceremony were also acknowledged, Williams says.
“I’m a daughter of a veteran who took the road less traveled and I have committed my work to working with veterans,” Powers said. “I just think that Randy and Debbie Nelson who have put together this coffee time have really been a blessing to this community and I cannot thank them enough for what they’re doing.”
Each of the veterans honored on Wednesday served in the U.S. military between Nov. 1, 1955 to May 15, 1975, Powers added.
Those who approached the front were given an official Vietnam veteran lapel pin in honor of their service. Veterans also chose from one of three Vietnam War proclamations signed by former presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump, and current President Joe Biden.
Supporters who gathered in the large dining room at Breakwater Grill cheered for each veteran as they received their commemorative memorabilia. At the end of the ceremony, a moment of silence was held while the playing of taps ended the morning of recognition.
“One thing I really think is very important is there were so few women that served in Vietnam and it was an honor today to have one of those women present,” Williams said of Vietnam War veteran Joan McDermott. “That’s my first time I pinned a female from the Vietnam Era and it was really very special for me today.”
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