By Justin Cox
Killeen Daily Herald
Amid the clink-clang and clamoring drums during dinner entertainment, the people who gathered at the Killeen Civic and Conference Center Friday night made every effort to establish one message: Let there never be another forgotten war.
It was part of a message given by all those who spoke and performed Friday night during the annual Korean War Veterans Association's "Remember Our Veterans" banquet.
Former Killeen Mayor Maureen Jouett addressed the assembled crowd, which was full of dress army uniforms, and spoke of her own attachment to this war.
She said that her sister was born only months before their father shipped out to Korea, a story like many others attached to this war.
Between dinner and the speakers, the Korean Dance Troop of San Antonio performed several numbers indicative of traditional, Korean festivals.
The performances were filled with music, bright colors, drums and song, and filled the room and hallways of KCCC in the late evening hours.
Major General Stewart Meyer, retired, offered his take on the war, remembering the global conflict as a result of the end of World War II.
Meyer, recalling the individual circumstances that led the communist regime to invade South Korea in 1950, said today's Korea should be commended for what they have done.
"It is a credit to the people of South Korea that they have accomplished as much as they have in the way of economics, political achievements," Meyer said. "North Korea we are all too familiar with. It's completely dominated by its leaders. Some 40 percent of the North Koreans live in poverty. About one-third of the population is malnourished. And North Korea has access to many natural resources."
Also speaking, and providing closing remarks, was Albert Gonzales, first vice-president of Chapter 222.
"Today, both Americans and Koreans are thankful," Gonzales said. "The guns in Korea are silent and a semblance of peace prevails over South Korea, one of the most prosperous countries in the Far East. Walk the wards of any VA hospital and visit with the men and women who served (during) those agonizing years in Korea and see why freedom is not free."
Contact Justin Cox at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (254) 501-7568.