MU celebrates, honors Veterans with Veterans Week events

Events included a parade, wreath-laying ceremony and commemorative football game.
A wreath lays on the Veterans Day memorial statue underneath the archway of the Memorial Student Union to honor and celebrate those who have served or continue to serve in the military. The wreath-laying ceremony took place on Nov. 11, 2019 as a part of the Veterans Week activities hosted by MU. Photo by Photo Editor Tanner Bubeck

As students, faculty and visitors walk under Memorial Student Union’s bell tower, they speak in hushed tones and remove their hats and hoods to pay respect to those whose names scatter the insides of the tower.

Nov. 6-16, MU paid respect to the veterans memorialized in the tower and the numerous others who left their families to protect their countries. The university held events such as a parade, a wreath-laying ceremony, banquet and football game to commemorate and honor veterans.

The wreath-laying ceremony celebrated Veterans Day on Monday, Nov. 11. Veterans and their friends sat in Stotler Lounge as various community members spoke. Early Missouri snowfall kept the ceremony inside rather than under the memorial arch as in past years. However, that did not prevent the laying of a wreath under the arch to commemorate the MU students who lost their lives in World War II.

Junior Ethan Cannon opened the ceremony by describing the meaning behind Memorial Union.

Senior Zachary Ignotz, president of the Missouri Student Veteran’s Association, emphasized how Veterans Day means something different to everyone in his speech.

“Today is also the day I think of friends that will never get any older,” Ignotz said in his speech. “I think of friends that are still struggling to find their place in the world and those friends on the other side of the globe, without their friends and family fighting for the safety that we all enjoy. I appreciate their sacrifice, and I think about them almost every day.”

The ceremony continued with MU alumnus Captain David Dry as he gave his keynote speech. He spoke of the history of Veterans Day as well as the history of buildings built in memoriam of the MU students who lost their lives in combat.

“Today we gather to remember the service members for whom these memorials were built,” Dry said in his speech. “The United States of America truly is blessed.”

Dry continued by quoting Ronald Reagan, saying the bravery that these men demonstrate captures the essence of what it means to be an American.

“That unique essence of service to our country runs stronger within some of us,” Dry said in his speech. “They deliberately take up the responsibility and charge of preserving the freedom of all Americans. The freedom we enjoy that comes at such high costs from those who came before us.”

The ceremony continued with the organizers reading the names of the MU students who passed, which was followed by a moment of silence in remembrance of the fallen.

After the wreath-laying attendees had the opportunity to personally thank the veterans in the room at a reception with food and beverages.

The week did not end with the wreath-laying ceremony. On Nov. 13 students participated in card making for veterans in the MU Student Center from 12 to 2 p.m. Students also attended a banquet on Nov. 15 as well as celebrated veterans with a roar at the Mizzou v. Florida football game on Nov. 16.

Edited by Alex Fulton | afulton@themaneater.com

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