Student: ‘Wounded warriors need benefits’
MUNCY – Perfect weather existed for this year’s Memorial Day holiday, parades and Memorial Day services. Each community celebrated with special events and recognitions well deserved.
At Muncy, the parade started at 11 a.m. led by the American Legion Post 268 and the Women’s Auxiliary and followed with a Memorial ceremony at Muncy Cemetery.
Mr. Ken Lowe, 1st Vice Commander of the American Legion Roland Ritter Post 268 introduced each speaker at Muncy after an invocation led by Pastor John D. Klim from the Fundamental Bible Church in Dushore who announced, “This day is sacred.”
Representative Garth Everett, dressed in military uniform, honored those in memory who gave lives to serve our country. “It is our duty of patriotism,” said Everett. “We are fortunate to live here thanks to the sacrifices of those before us who left this beautiful area to save us and make us free. Today we owe much to many as we get together to remember why we are here.”
Muncy High School Band played two patriotic songs during a salute to departed comrades. A big effort was made to advocate in Congress the need to support our wounded veterans. Casey Blair, a 10th grader from Muncy wrote the winning essay and explained how America does not care for our veterans after war. With strong conviction and emotion she announced in her speech, “they [veterans] are not getting the health care and benefits they deserve.”
She further explained that many times veterans have long waits for medical services that should be provided to them free of cost. She feels that America owes them more including more support for their families. “America can pay for these heaping medical bills. Our nation needs to step in and pay 100 percent of their medical bills for what these brave souls have seen.” She added, “It’s the least we can do.”
Many are in recovery, staying in hospitals, and Blair urged everyone to show gratitude and visit a veteran. Plenty of resources are needed from housing, employment and education to improve quality care when veterans return from war. “Wounded veterans need so much more to make their lives so much fuller and happier.”
Commander Ken Lowe awarded Blair with a certificate of distinction and $100 for her top winning essay. Gina Paisley, a senior won second place and Maggie Merk was also a winning contestant.