• Lifestyles

Honoring those who serve, at a Veterans Day event in Milford

Updated: Nov 21, 2019

Marines stood together during a Veterans Day service in Milford. See the related photo gallery. Lifestyles photo by Katie Collins.

By Katie Collins lifesnews51@gmail.com Follow Katie @Lifestyles51

MILFORD - Remembrance and honor must overshadow all politics on Veterans Day. That is the message Milford Mayor Sean Strub sent, when he spoke at a service hosted by the Marsch-Kellogg American Legion Post 139 at Pike County Soldiers and Sailors Monument in Kiehl Park last week.

It is because of veterans’ “patriotism, love of country and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good,” Americans must honor the servicemen said Strub.

Strub acknowledged the six mothers of six sailors from the region, who’s efforts have led to the streets of Milford being lined with banners that recognize the servicemen from Pike County. Amongst the many banners, there are a few that honor local veterans who served in the Revolutionary War, such as Francis Craft, who was a drummer boy at Gettysburg in the Civil War at the age of 10. Strub noted TR Julius Klein, who came to the United States in the 1850s, and went on to serve in the Civil War. Later, Klein opened a hardware store on Broad Street, that he operated until his death. There was Sonia Gaskin, who was the first lieutenant in the United States Army, serving in the Atlantic and Pacific theaters during World War Two. After her service, Gaskin became the first female commander of Mount Laurel VFW post in Milford. Strub mentioned several other “patriots” who should be honored because they were a part of the community following their “service and sacrifices.”

It is the patriot Strub said, who does more than vote to send Americans to fight in wars, but rather is someone who votes to provide services that veterans will need when they return from war, such as his father who went to college because of the G.I. Bill. Now, he wonders where is the G.I. Bill to assist the homeless veterans suffering from PTSD. He urges Americans to look beyond labels to recognize “real patriotism and true service” of those who have put themselves and all they care for at risk for the betterment of everyone else.

Commander Connie Harvey of the American Legion Post 139 shared the evolution of Veterans Day and why it is a time to honor veterans who “unselfishly placed their lives on the line for our freedom.” Those men and women were “ordinary people” until they chose to answer the call of duty. Those who serve, choose to leave their families and lives behind, not for the recognition, but to protect the country and allow Americans to maintain their way of life.

When people see a veteran, Chaplain John Kupillas said they should be thanked for their service, and welcomed home.

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