Many tears were shed at CVTC recently, but they were accompanied by many proud moments, and deeply patriotic feelings.
The Field of Honor, presented by the Exchange Clubs of Eau Claire, drew hundreds of visitors from
Sept. 8-16 to CVTC, which hosted the display.
A grassy field on the south side of Clairemont Avenue, adjacent to the main CVTC student parking lot, was filled with a display of 1,500 American flags, lined up in straight, precise rows. The flags honored American military veterans, and were accompanied by another 141 Wisconsin flags representing soldiers from Wisconsin who lost their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan since Sept. 11, 2001. Each of those Wisconsin flags included the fallen hero’s name, photo and a brief biography.
Along with the Field of Honor, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Moving Wall, a replica of the memorial located in Washington, D.C., was on display for a time adjacent to the Field of Honor.
And so, as people identified particular names on the Moving Wall or on the Field of Honor flags, they shed some tears for loved ones or comrades lost.
Still, the Field of Honor display was not so much sad as it was beautiful.
“It’s beautiful, absolutely breathtaking, George Jevne, a WWII veteran from Eau Claire told the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram on opening day of the display.
Of course, visitors included many CVTC students and staff. Some even participated in the events surrounding the display. CVTC Law Enforcement and FireMedic program students volunteered as guards at the site.
“This is a great opportunity to honor people who have fallen in the line of duty while serving their country,” said Nathan Dean, a deputy sheriff with Eau Claire County and a second-year CVTC student. He added that guarding the display made him feel like part of the larger brotherhood of law enforcement officers.
“The National Exchange Club is committed to promote pride in country, respect for the flag, and appreciation of our freedom. In the quest of those freedoms and in defense of our nation, we have produced countless heroes and veterans of our military service,” said Tim Abraham of the Eau Claire Exchange Club.
“For many veterans, there was no welcome home, no ticker-tape parade, no acknowledgement of the sacrifice they made in service to our country. We seek to recognize and thank all veterans who served their nation,” added Exchange Club member Brian Wagner.