ASU conducts Veterans Day celebration

Photo by Laura Williams

Photo by Laura Williams

ALBANY -- Albany State University joined others across the United States Wednesday to celebrate the sacrifices made by the nation's military veterans.

In observance of Veterans Day, Albany State held a celebration in the ACAD auditorium on campus.

After a presentation of the pledge of allegiance from ASU Early Learning Center students, and a veterans salute by Criminal Justice Professor Patricia Ryan-Ikegwuonu, an address was made by Michael Bryant, field representative for Rep. Sanford Bishop, D-Albany.

In his address, Bryant expressed gratitude to veterans.

"Just think if we didn't have the freedoms to do certain things," Bryant said. "We stop to remember those that rest in peace so we can sleep in peace."

Leland Burkart, chair of the military affairs committee for the Albany Area Chamber of Commerce, used the opportunity to make reference to a series of World War II veteran stories published in The Albany Herald over the last few weeks.

In so doing, he also communicated appreciation for the bravery expressed from other generations touched by war.

"These acts of valor and heroism need to be told to a new generation," he said. "Through the years, each generation has risen up to the challenge; each generation has not hesitated to take the torch."

Lakeesh Dent, the institution's Student Government Association president, also provided a few words on behalf of the student body.

"On this day we would like to thank veterans for their sacrifice," she said.

The program also included performances by the ASU Gospel Choir and the school's band.

President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a proclamation for Veterans Day in 1954. The holiday marks the anniversary of the end of hostilities in World War I, which formerly ended on the 11th hour of the 11th day on the 11th month of 1918. In other parts of the world it is also known as Armistice Day or Remembrance Day.