A “Welcome Home” celebration for Vietnam War veterans is being planned by Hancock County Veteran’s Council in cooperation with 15-20 organizations which provide veterans assistance.
Bill Johns, council president, is seeking donations for the Sept. 23 event which will include a parade, a service at the War Memorial on North Main Street and possibly a dinner and dance. There will be a memorial service for military veterans who did not return from the conflict, too.
In discussions with the Hancock County Commissioners today, Johns said 27 county residents were either killed or listed as missing in action.
A letter has been drafted which will be sent to area businesses seeking donations. The goal is $10,000 for the event and he has already secured several thousand dollars, Johns said.
“Our goal is to show the veterans from this trying time in our world that what they sacrificed was not in vain and we do appreciate them beyond measure,” he read from the letter. “Unfortunately, in order to do this properly, there will definitely be expenses involved.”
“… We are asking that you take a moment, consider the importance of an event like this for these veterans,” he said, “and help us to make this an amazing event that will show them how much they are appreciated and honor their sacrifices.”
A commemorative coin may be struck and presented to the “left out soldiers,” as Johns referred to the veterans, as a remembrance of the event,
The commissioners offered use of vacant property just north of the Main Street bridge as a staging area for vehicles during the event and will also prepare a proclamation to be read at the service.
Johns can be contacted at 419-721-7275 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.