by Bill Sahno
The public is invited to attend a gala Veterans Day celebration at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 11 at the Payson High School auditorium.
Lee Pretch, Payson's Woman of the Year and the driving force behind displaying our national flag on appropriate occasions, has once again demonstrated her initiative and civic pride by developing and coordinating a patriotic tribute to our American veterans.
The event, titled "On the Wings of Eagles: A Tribute to our American Heroes," will be narrated by local personality Randy Roberson and highlights a slide and musical presentation honoring our veterans.
The program will include featured speaker Rep. J.D. Hayworth, the presentation of colors by the Luke Air Force Color Guard, musical renditions by the Payson High School band, various choral presentations, a performance by the Arizona Sun City Poms and an honor guard staffed by community scouts.
The Town of Payson will officially recognize the tribute with a proclamation signed by Mayor Vern Stiffler, and those attending will receive a small memento of the event.
More than ever, we, as citizens of this great country and fine community need to band together and rededicate ourselves to the ideals and goals that define our traditional values.
This is an opportunity for the citizens of our community to join together as friends, neighbors and American patriots to demonstrate our support for all that we recognize as proper in our nation.
Each citizen, by being present and sharing a brief bit of time together, will make a very important statement. That statement is to declare our deep and abiding appreciation to the many men and women who have died defending the standards and principles upon which America was founded, as well as recognizing the veterans who survived our nation's conflicts and those missing in action or captured as prisoners of war associated with those conflicts.
Dr. Larry Ward, Payson resident, noted world humanitarian and dedicated advocate for our POWs and MIAs will be present to share his observations.
This is a time of recognition, remembrance and rededication. The price of attendance is small since it represents only a brief slice of one's time. The tribute we offer is toward a profound debt of gratitude we owe to those who paid an incalculable price for the freedoms we now enjoy.
Again, we shall strive to make this event one to be remembered and emulated for future occasions for it is a good and proper thing to do.