To the Editor:
This year will be the 12th annual Harker Heights Food, Wine and Brew Fest, held on Sept. 11 at Community Park in Harker Heights. We missed the 2020 event due to COVID. This festival has been held every year on the second Saturday of September, which allows the Chamber to de-conflict competing events from other Central Texas venues.
As many remember, September 11 is a very significant day, when our nation was brutally attacked by radical Islamic terrorists. I can recall exactly where I was that day — at the West Fort Hood shooting range with my fellow soldiers and their families at an Operational Test Command Organizational Day.
These terrorists attacked America, propelling us into a war on terror that still continues to this day. Many brave First Responders — Fire, Police, and EMS personnel — lost their lives on this day and many brave men and women in our nation’s military forces have also been lost fighting this war on terror for our nation.
Several citizens have voiced concerns on why the Harker Heights Chamber of Commerce is conducting this festival on such a day and why this event is not moved to another day.
I see moving this event as the wrong course of action. It would be surrendering this day to the terrorists who wanted to hurt and break our will. They wanted to change America for the worse. I, like many other Armed Forces members, served in conflicts around the world in the war on terror. I lost friends and classmates to this fight, but we all shared something in common; we wanted America to be strong and to protect our freedoms and way of life that we all enjoy as Americans!
This Food, Wine and Brew Fest is a great opportunity for us all as Americans to come together to celebrate what it means to be an American. We want to honor the sacrifices of those before us.
The Harker Heights Chamber of Commerce is putting together a great program of “Cheers to our Hometown Heroes” for this year’s event. The program calls for words and a moment of silence for remembrance honoring those lost or that sacrificed much so that we as Americans can be free and celebrate our many freedoms with our families and friends. This is also a great teaching moment for those who might not know about the significance of this day. Let us never forget those who sacrificed all for us today.
So as we enjoy the fine foods, drink and freedoms at the 12th Annual Food, Wine and Brew Fest on Sept. 11, let us all remember to thank our many first responders and military who the Harker Heights Chamber of Commerce has named to be the VIPs for this event. Together we are all an integral part of the community of Harker Heights’ citizens and truly together we are all Heights Strong!
Harker Heights Councilman Place 2
retired Army lieutenant colonel