The 2013 Veteran’s Vigil will be held November 6 and 7 at Texas A&M University-Commerce. The Vigil will kick off with a reception on Wednesday at 9:30am in the Rayburn Student Center (RSC) pre-function area followed by the opening ceremony at 10:00am in the conference rooms. Immediately following the opening ceremony, a vigil flame will be lit and continuously burn until it is extinguished at the Closing Ceremony on Thursday, November 7, at 4:30 pm.
This year’s Veteran’s Vigil honors disabled veterans.
Retired Naval Chief Petty Officer John Turner is this year’s guest speaker for the opening ceremony. Mr. Turner began his service in 1965 first as a Quartermaster/Signalman Striker and then as a Communications Technician. He served in Guam, Germany, Japan and stateside in several different locations before retiring in 1985. After twenty years of active duty, Turner got a job working for E-Systems, now L-3 Mission Integration. He stayed there for 22 years and retired in 2007. Turner has spent the last four years serving as Commander of the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) Chapter of Hunt County in Greenville. He has also been a service officer who files disability and benefit claims for veterans and their families for the last 5 years. Mr. Turner and his wife have been married for over 47 years, and they have two sons. Mrs. Turner serves as the Commander of the Disabled American Veterans’ Auxiliary (DAVA) Unit 81.
Following the Opening Ceremony Wednesday, November 6 the Student Veteran Association (SVA) is hosting a 5K run on the Cross Country trail at 2:30pm. Cost for the 5K is $5; all proceeds go to the SVA to continue servicing the community and other events. On Thursday, the SVA will be taking $10 per bike for a motorcycle run at 1:30pm. Participants will meet in the Keith D. McFarland Science Building parking lot. The Closing Ceremony on Thursday, November 7 will take place on the walking mall of the RSC at 4:30pm. In addition to the Vigil activities, on November 6-11 veterans can receive a 10% discount at the RSC Bookstore with their military ID or DD214.
On November 9, the second annual Veterans’ Appreciation Ball, hosted by the SVA, will be held from 6 to 11 pm in the Rayburn Student Center conference rooms to close out the university’s celebration.
“The Veteran’s Appreciation Ball provides an opportunity for our veterans to celebrate their service and share the experiences they have had while serving,” said Jill Mobley, Committee Chair and SVA Secretary. “The Ball allows us to continue to honor each service, and celebrate jointly. Our student and faculty/staff veterans now find themselves part of a different, more diverse group because they are no longer in service. Everyone is invited to attend including students, faculty, staff, and the community.”
Attendees will enjoy entry to the event, a formal meal, non-alcoholic beverages and entertainment for the evening. A cash-only bar will also be available for the purchase of beer and wine.
Tickets are $20 per person and are available until November 1. Purchases can be made in the Veterans & Military Service Office in the One Stop Shop or in room 272 of the Business Administration Building. Orders may also be e-mailed to [email protected]. The SVA accepts cash or checks only.
For more information on the Veteran’s Vigil or activities, contact Jessica Gossett at [email protected] or 903-886-5069. For more information about the Veteran’s Ball, please contact Jill Mobley at 903-468-8680 or [email protected].