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Letter to the editor: Thanks for support of Vietnam Vet program
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From Tammy Derrickson

Gold Star daughter of Staff Sgt. Donald L. Smith Director, Behring Senior Center

To the editor:

A huge thank you to everyone who attended "A Salute to Vietnam Era Veterans." The event sponsored by the Behring Senior Center was amazing to be part of. I thank all of the 700 people who attended. To see such support from all branches of the military pay special tribute to our Vietnam veterans was overwhelming. Those of you in attendance know what a special day it was, and certainly long overdue recognition of all of our Vietnam era veterans. It took a long time for our Vietnam veterans to get the recognition they so deserve, but it's never too late to say thank you for your service. To the family members of our seven Green County heroes, I say thank you. The loss of a loved one is never easy and you never get over it, but I hope the support shown lets you know you are not alone. The seven young men killed in Vietnam from Green County, David Timm, Ronald Schmid, Roger Ritschard, Marvin Pederson, John Krebs Jr., Kenneth Keller and Kris Blumer, became a part of us at the Senior Center and we will never forget them and their supreme sacrifice to our country. To the Vietnam era veterans, we say thank you for your service so many years ago; for many it was a life-changing event made even more so by the unjust treatment at home. We thank you for paving the way for current returning veterans so they do not have to endure what so many of you did. I hope the senior center helped heal the scars in some small way for those of you in attendance.

Special thanks to the Community Foundation of Southern Wisconsin, and local media outlets who helped and supported us in getting the word out. Thank you to Monroe High School and Jenny Borchar - your attention to detail was much appreciated. Special thanks to the Green County Veterans Memorial committee, VFW, Vietnam Veterans of America, and American Legion for your support. Big thank you also to the wonderful speakers: Junior Robertson, Peter Finnegan, Kay Krebs, Steve Saunders, Clayton Ruegsegger, Jack Oostdik, singer Jackie Ceithamer, and a special thank you to Vietnam era veteran Mayor William Ross Jr. The month of October was designated Vietnam Era Veterans Month by Ross and we thank him and the city of Monroe for their unwavering support of this event.