HARKER HEIGHTS — Current and former members of the military gathered with civilians outside City Hall on Monday to celebrate Veterans Day.
The event, which started as the sun began to set, included a wreath-laying and speeches by several notable guests who paid tribute to area veterans.
“These are veterans who have served our nation selflessly in every capacity,” said Brig. Gen. Douglas Gabram, deputy commander of the 1st Cavalry Division.
Gabram, the keynote speaker, said the day not only represented a chance to honor those who served in the military, but was a poignant reminder to those currently serving as well.
“It reminds those of us who still wear the uniform why we do what we do,” Gabram said.
Harker Heights Mayor Mike Aycock also spoke at the ceremony. He honored 96-year-old Winfred J. Williams, a Harker Heights resident and World War II veteran.
“You honor us with you presence,” Aycock said.
Williams enlisted in the Army Air
Force in 1942 and served in North Africa and Europe.
One of the oldest veterans in attendance at the ceremony, Williams offered advice to the new generation of men and women ending their service with the military.
“Be sober in everything you do,” Williams said.
This year’s wreath was presented by Staff Sgt. Daniel Boswell and Sgt. Trecia Rodgers with the support of the Harker Heights High School JROTC. A moment of silence followed the presentation of the wreath.
While communities across the nation held similar events in honor of Veterans Day, Aycock said being mayor of a city that is home to such a large number of veterans and active-duty military is an honor.
“When we see how many veterans and members of our military come out (to the ceremony), it really means a lot to us,” he said.