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Veterans to be honored at area celebrations

(SCC photo)

(SCC photo)

St. Charles Community College, 4601 Mid Rivers Mall Drive in Cottleville, will host a series of free events on Nov. 9-12 in honor of veterans.

“Veterans Week provides an opportunity for awareness of those among us who have protected our rights and our freedoms in this country and to thank them for their service,” said Kelley Pfeiffer, SCC associate dean of student success.

On Monday, Nov. 9 at 11 a.m., Lt. Clifford B. Smith, Army Air Corps veteran, will give the keynote address at a celebration in the College Center Gymnasium. The ceremony will include the SCC Concert Band under the direction of David Dickey, the SCC Choir under the direction of Gene Ditch and local veteran organizations and their color guards. SCC president Ron Chesbrough will welcome students, faculty, staff and community members.

Smith earned a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Missouri in 1942. He enlisted in the Army Air Corps that same year. As a flight engineer, he flew with an 11-man crew to Saipan in November 1944. He bombed Nagoya on Dec. 18, 1944, and was ditched near Kita Iwo at dusk.

On Dec. 19, 1944, Smith was rescued by an American Navy Submarine – the USS Spearfish. He went 26 days on patrol with the Spearfish along the coast of Japan, and returned to Saipan to complete 31 missions.

He was discharged from the Army Air Corps in August 1945.

Smith continued his career at Ralston Purina, now Nestle Purina PetCare Company, in the engineering department for 30 years. He spent the next 40 years operating CB Smith Co., a manufacturers representative firm for water and waste-water treatment equipment.

On Tuesday, Nov. 10 at 11:30 a.m., a Student Veterans Panel will take place. Held in the auditorium of the Daniel J. Conoyer Social Sciences Building, the panel will present life from the student veteran’s perspective. All panelists are current SCC students who have served in the military. This event is sponsored by the Student Veterans Organization (SVO).

On Wednesday, Nov. 11, at 1 p.m., a Veterans Ceremonial March will take place at the flagpole outside the Learning Resource Center. Campus and community members are welcome to join the ceremonial march around campus to honor and recognize our veterans. Hosted by the Student Veterans Organization, the ceremonial march will take place rain or shine.

On Wednesday, Nov. 11, at 6 p.m., the film “Comedy Warriors: Healing Through Humor” will be shown in the auditorium of the Social Sciences Building on the SCC campus. The documentary follows five severely wounded Iraq/Afghanistan veterans who were given the opportunity to explore their experiences through the healing power of humor.

On Thursday Nov. 12, at 6 p.m., a keynote address featuring SCC students SFC George Polette, retired United States Army, and Lt. Cpl.Mark Meirink, United States Marine Corps, will take place.

The keynote address will take place in the auditorium of the Social Sciences Building.

For more information on Veterans Week events, visit www.stchas.edu/veteransweek.

To learn more about services for veterans on campus, the Student Veteran Organization and Honoring Military Families Scholarship, contact Kylene Montgomery, SCC veteran services coordinator, at (636) 922-8268.

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O’Fallon’s Veterans Day Ceremony honors U.S. veterans of all wars

O’Fallon’s annual ceremony honoring and thanking veterans for their service will begin at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 11 at O’Fallon Veterans Memorial Walk, 800 Belleau Creek Road. Free parking is available.

The keynote speaker for the event is Lt. Col. Joe Meister of the U.S. Air Force.

The ceremony, which will be led by VFW Post 5077 and American Legion Post 388 with assistance from the O’Fallon Veterans Commission, includes remarks by Mayor Bill Hennessy and participation by local students who entered the VFW’s annual “The Voice of Democracy” and “The Patriot’s Pen” contests.

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