Local military heroes honored in Veterans Day events

SMYRNA — Veterans Day festivities got an early start this year, beginning with town officials honoring seven local residents during Smyrna’s annual Veterans Day Recognition Ceremony on Thursday.

Once the names are announced on the Thursday night before Veterans Day, “Our American Hero” banners go up the following year. Each banner includes the person’s name and branch in which he or she served.

Those nominated Thursday were Maria N. Burritt (Air Force), Henry J. Evans (Army), Conrad T. Hebert (Navy), Laurence G. Koehler (Navy), Gerald J. Mood (Navy), Charles R. Scott (Marine Corps) and Howell F. Wallace (Marine Corps ).

To qualify as a participant, the honoree must be a member of the Armed Forces or have served in the past and be a Smyrna resident or an immediate family member of a Smyrna resident.

The program was created by Councilman John Embert in 2013 to recognize local men and women who have either served or are serving in the military.

Dover parade is today

At 10 a.m. today, a parade to honor veterans will take place in downtown Dover. It will be followed by a noon dedication of a monument at Legislative Hall to honor Delawareans who served in conflicts in the Middle East and Afghanistan.

The event is sponsored by the Delaware General Assembly in conjunction with the Delaware Commission of Veterans Affairs, the Delaware National Guard, the city of Dover, the Downtown Dover Partnership and state veterans’ organizations.

The parade will begin at the Duncan Center and proceed through west Dover, move east along Loockerman Street, turn right onto Federal Street and end at Legislative Mall.

It will be followed by the noon dedication of the monument honoring Middle East and Afghanistan veterans.

Twenty-one Delawareans have lost their lives in the Middle East and Afghanistan since 1991.

The monument will be located at the northeast corner of the Legislative Mall grounds, facing Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard North.

It will be similar in size and design to the World War II monument dedicated in 2013.

A post-event reception will be held in the Delaware Archives building at 121 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. North in Dover.

Capt. Robin R. Gibbs, a Dover High School graduate, will serve as the keynote speaker during the memorial ceremony.

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