LONGVIEW, Texas (KLTV) - There were several Veteran’s Day ceremonies held in Longview where friends and family came forward to honor veterans of all ages for their sacrifices, great or small, given for our freedom.
Buckner Westminster Place recognized veterans from World War Two, Korea, and Vietnam.
Former Harrison County Judge Jim Ammerman was humbled to take the podium at Buckner. Directly in front of him sat about fifty residents, some were veterans like Korean War radio operator Wilburn Gage.
“They have died for us. They have lost limbs for us; they have lost hands, arms feet, legs, and eyes, for us,” Ammerman said.
Gage witnessed that during the Korean War.
“It was because of sacrifice of their life, and were gone from home; left their wives a lot of them, and a lot of them of course, didn’t come back. Some friends I went with didn’t come back,” Gage relayed.
And some who fell were never identified.
“The three anonymous heroes in the Tomb of the Unknown, whose presence at the Arlington National Cemetery must forever preserve the memory of all the anonymous heroes whose valor dies unrecognized with them on the battlefield or in the ocean’s sunless deep,” Ammerman said.
But known or unknown, private or general:
“All the soldiers live by the military code of conduct which begins: I am an American fighting in the armed forces which guard my country and our way of life,” Ammerman stated.
“It is a real honor to meet you fine heroes,” Ammerman added.
And, like many veterans who came back from battle, Wilburn Gage feels no more deserving of that title than anyone else in the room.
“Well, I don’t feel like a hero really, you know. I just did what I was supposed to do,” Gage said.
The Senior Living Community holds the veteran’s celebration every year. This year all the veterans in attendance received a pin in honor of their military service.