39°F
weather icon Overcast

Veterans honored, armistice remembered

Nearly 100 years to the moment after World War I officially ended, the sacrifices made by those who fought and died in the battle, along with those who served in every war before and after, were honored during ceremonies Sunday, Nov. 11, at the Nevada State Veterans Home.

Kat Miller, director of the Nevada Department of Veterans Services, said the annual observance, held on the anniversary of the end of the war to end all wars, is especially fitting for those from the Battle Born state.

She said 1,500 men from Nevada, which had a population of about 8,100 at the time, served in the war. Of those, 195 were killed.

Their memory lived on as a program listing each of their names was distributed to those attending.

A special proclamation issued by Gov. Brian Sandoval honoring the centennial of the armistice was read and each person attending was given a commemorative pin marking the anniversary.

As Miller introduced guests and dignitaries, she said “our most distinguished visitors are not visitors. They are residents of the Nevada State Veterans Home.”

The residents, bundled to protect themselves from the chilling wind, shared their patriotism by singing loudly during a rendition of “God Bless America” and sporting red, white and blue attire.

“We owe (veterans) a debt of gratitude that can never be repaid,” said Rep. Jacky Rosen, who expressed her appreciation for veterans’ service.

“Perhaps the most rewarding part of the trip, … involved meeting the remarkable veterans at the veterans home,” said keynote speaker Patrick K. O’Donnell, a combat historian and best-selling author. “These men and women are living national treasures — they fought in the jungles of Guadalcanal, the frozen tundra of Korea’s Chosin Reservoir, Vietnam and Iraq,” he said.

O’Donnell spoke about his latest book, “The Unknowns: The Untold Story of America’s Unknown Soldier and WWI’s Most Decorated Soldiers Who Brought Him Home,” which tells the story of the war, putting readers in the middle of battles and trenches, as he introduces the eight heroic veterans who were selected by Gen. John Pershing to carry the body of the Unknown Soldier when he was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery.

One of those men, Harry Taylor, was from Nevada and served in the Wild West (91st Infantry) Division that helped drive the German across the Escaut River in France, he said.

“Largely made up of Nevada soldiers, this unit took on an impossible objective: to crack a segment of the Hindenburg Line manned by some of the Imperial German Army’s toughest troops — a suicide mission. The Wild Westerners attacked across a mile-long open field, braving hundreds of machine guns, barrages of German artillery and deadly poison gas — and they succeeded.”

O’Donnell, who was embedded with a Marine rifle platoon during the Battle of Fallujah, survived several ambushes and carried a mortally wounded Marine out of a fight with Chechen insurgents.

He said he felt a connection between Iraq War and World War I veterans as both were unrecognized for their efforts, which helped lead him to his most recent book, and he was honored to deliver the keynote address.

Hali Bernstein Saylor is editor of the Boulder City Review. She can be reached at hsaylor@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9523. Follow @HalisComment on Twitter.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
Study: Solar panels improve desert life

The solar panels in the Eldorado Valley outside of Boulder City could help desert plants and wildlife because of how they direct rainwater into the ground, according to researchers with Las Vegas’ Desert Research Institute.

Vaccine clinics scheduled

Some Boulder City residents will be able to receive the COVID-19 vaccine for free locally, starting Monday, Jan. 25.

Vece joins race for council seat

With five days remaining until the filing period for those wishing to run for a seat on the City Council officially opens, the pool of candidates continues to grow.

Planning begins for students to return to campuses

Local leaders are unsure how they will implement new guidance from the school district about reopening campuses to students and teachers.

Vaccine questions answered

Boulder City Hospital adheres to federal, state and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines for the distribution and administration of the COVID-19 vaccine. Due to the limited quantity available of the newly developed vaccine, a tiered system has been implemented and identifies vulnerable populations to be immunized.

Salary range, guidelines set for new city attorney, manager

The search for the next city manager and city attorney is a little more defined as City Council recently approved the salary range and compensation package for each position.

Purpose of proposed ballot question contested

City Council is divided on whether safety or growth is the purpose of a proposed ballot question about airport capital improvement projects and have yet to decide about moving forward with it.

Three announce plans to seek council seat

Candidate filing for Boulder City’s 2021 municipal election starts in less than two weeks and three residents have already announced their intention to run for city office.

Temporary staff check for COVID compliance

Boulder City is using temporary part-time code enforcement officers to help ensure that local businesses are complying with current health and safety guidelines for the pandemic.

Two council seats up for election

The 2021 municipal election will see residents voting to fill two seats on City Council as well as offer guidance on some community issues.