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Spirit of ’45 makes seventh salute to veterans

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Curtis Michaels photo LOCAL ARTIST SALUTES VETERANS IN SONG A salute to all veterans was celebrated at Cattleman’s Kounty Kitchen at 2010 South Main Street, Monday night. Andres De Gutierrez provided some of the music for the event.

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Many locals will agree that a meal and a “thank you” isn’t enough to properly show the gratitude to the veterans of the United States, but it certainly helps.
Cattleman’s Kountry Kitchen presented the seventh annual Spirit of ‘45 Salute to All Veterans Monday evening. While the “45” is in relation to the year World War II ended, veterans from every aspect were thanked with brisket, music and a good amount of cake.
Former Roswell mayor and announced mayoral candidate Del Jurney spoke at the ceremony, offering thanks to all of the veterans in attendance.

“What we have is something that we many times take advantage of — we take for granted,” Jurney said. “I thank God for the fact that we have the ability to regain that patriotism, and to all that we are here for, I believe, good and noble reasons, but we’re here because of you. We’re here because you sacrifice, you gave up your time, you gave up your talents and you gave up your treasures.”

Jurney spoke from the perspective of someone who didn’t serve in the military. He said he wanted to, but couldn’t due to a car accident he was involved in when he was 9 years old.
“I would’ve been standing there beside many of you, fighting for what is right, fighting for our nation,” he said. “As to that, those of us that did not serve, we say thank you.”
Jurney said he saw how veterans were treated during the late-60s and early 1970s.
“Many of you were treated so poorly, coming back from Vietnam,” he said. “That was a very difficult time, and it was an unfortunate occurrence down in our nation’s history.”
Jurney left veterans with the words given by President Harry S. Truman in an excerpt from Aug. 14, 1945.

“It talks about me, and it talks about many who have come since that time,” Jurney said. “Future generations, they don’t want to reflect on the achievements of this historic year to fully appreciate the greatness of America, and as the men and women of the World War II generation truly deserve to be called America’s greatest.

“Today, our country, having achieved a victory over the forces of aggression … (and) dedicated itself to building a more peaceful world in an unprecedented effort to ensure a better future for the children in both its friends and former foes.
“In my heart, ladies and gentleman, that wraps it up.”

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