Cameron University’s Bentley Gardens will be awash with American flags when the university participates in the Remembrance Day National Roll Call on Veterans Day, Friday, Nov. 11. Approximately 6,200 American flags will be placed in Bentley Gardens – one for each of the casualties of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, now called Operation New Dawn.
“This special Veterans Day observance individually recognizing each service member whose life was lost in support of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan marks a new tradition at Cameron University,” says President Cindy Ross. “Our military community is a vital part of Cameron. The university has been recognized as a Military Friendly School for the past two years, and we are home to one of the top three Army ROTC units in the nation. Through partnerships with Fort Sill, Cameron strives to serve those who serve our country. We are honored to pay homage to those who gave the ultimate sacrifice and to thank all active-duty military and veterans for their service.”
The observance will begin at 8 a.m. when community and student volunteers will commence reading the names of each of the service members whose lives were lost in the two campaigns. Community organizations and individuals who wish to participate in the reading of the names should contact Jennifer Holland, Vice President for Student Services, at 581-2244.
“This event will signal to the troops currently serving that their sacrifices have not been forgotten,” says Holland. “The reading of individual names will be extremely poignant and will emphasize the significance of each and every life lost. Each of the fallen deserves to be remembered, and Cameron is privileged to honor those who have sacrificed so much on our behalf.”
At 1 p.m., the reading will halt momentarily to allow for a moment of silence held simultaneously across the country by more than 175 colleges and universities. The reading of the names will continue throughout the day and will take nearly eight hours to complete as readers announce the names in chronological order.
A Veterans Day Ceremony will take place at 1:15 p.m. in the Bentley Gardens gazebo. In addition, Cameron will provide opportunities for students, faculty, staff and community members to send cards to area veterans as well as a Wall of Remembrance on which individuals can leave notes of gratitude.
Cameron University and Sodexho will provide a complimentary meal to active duty military and veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Shepler Cafeteria.
November 1, 2011