Thursday A Day to Say Thanks
By Patrick Cronin
Hampton Union, Friday, November 12, 2010
[The following article is courtesy of the Hampton Union and Seacoast Online.]
HAMPTON -- The theme of this year's American Legion Post 35 Veterans Day observance was acknowledging and paying tribute to the generations of family members who have served in the military.
So it was only fitting that this year's guest speaker, Maj. David Weatherby, a 20-year U.S. Army veteran, had his family around him. Some even took part in the ceremony.
His daughter, Elaine Weatherby, sang the National Anthem while his brother, Mark Weatherby, played Taps.
More than 50 residents came out early Thursday morning to the Marine Memorial statue at Hampton Beach to honor the sacrifice and commitment of the nation's military personnel.
It was just one of four Veterans Day observances Post 35 held throughout the day in Hampton Falls, North Hampton and Hampton.
Weatherby said Thursday was a day to honor all living veterans across America, from those who served in World War II to those currently fighting in the Global War on Terrorism, and to thank them for their service.
American Legion Post 35 Commander Ralph Fatello said he selected this year's theme because it amazes him how serving in the military for so many is a tradition that runs deep in their families.
In his own family, Fatello said his brother, father, grandfather and nine uncles all served in the military.
He urged all those in attendance to call up a veteran they know and thank them for their service.
"If you have a veteran in your family and if they are getting on in age you need to talk to them and hear their stories," Fatello said. "So you can share those stories with your own children and they can pass it on to theirs.
Taking part in the ceremony were Post 35 members, a rifle squad and the Winnacunnet High School U.S. Marine Corps Junior ROTC Color Guard.
As part of the ceremony, veterans assembled to honor those veterans who have died by giving a salute to the fallen. A rifle squad fired three rounds, and Taps was played.
Similar observances were held at Weare Park on Exeter Road in Hampton Falls and at the North Hampton Public Library.
After the last observance at the Post 35 hall, the public was invited inside for refreshments.
Veterans Day is celebrated on the anniversary of the Armistice of World War I in 1918, when major hostilities ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.