Chez Veterans Center hosts annual Veterans Day Celebration

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Navy ROTC Commanding Officer Capt. David Casteel shared the history of Veterans Day with attendees at the Chez Veterans Center’s annual Veterans Day event last Thursday. Chez describes the day as a way to memorialize our past.

By Faith Lee, Contributing Writer

Last Thursday, the Chez Veterans Center and the University ROTC hosted their fourth annual Veterans Day Celebration to commemorate Veterans Day. 

The celebration was highlighted by lunch and a speech from Navy ROTC Commander Captain David Casteel. 

The celebration began with a speech given by Casteel. The speech focused on how Veterans Day came to be celebrated after the end of the Great War, as well as the importance of not repeating history. 

“Veterans Day is important to memorialize our past,” Casteel said. “If you don’t study history, you’re doomed to repeat it. We have Memorial Day, but Veterans Day I think is even more special just because all the anniversaries of everything we’ve done can commemorate the Great War. It’s important to honor those who came before us and made this country who we are.” 

The Chez Veterans Center opened in 2015 and has served as a resource on campus that provides academic support services to military-connected students. The center also focuses on helping veterans transition smoothly into college. 

Dustin Ha, junior in LAS, served in the U.S. Army stateside and in Afghanistan for six years as a cryptologic linguist. For Ha, the celebratory lunch and Veterans Day overall serve as a day of remembrance. 

“(Celebrations like this) are like a remembrance for those who forget that our past can be repeated,” Ha said. “There are a lot of veteran students, such as myself, that (attend) the University, and it’s good to see this appreciation.” 

The event was decorated with American flags and colors, displaying American pride. Celebration attendees were encouraged to take yellow ribbons to show support for veterans. 

The staff of the Chez Veterans Center helps coordinate the yearly celebration for the veterans. 

“The veteran community is something that affects everyone here in America,” said Ingrid Wheeler, assistant director of Behavioral Health Services at Chez Veterans Center. “While it’s a small community, it’s important to pay respect and attention to the sacrifice and the jobs (veterans) volunteer for.” 

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