LANSING, Mich. — Michigan Senate Majority Floor Leader Mike Kowall and Sen. Dale Zorn on Thursday announced that they are sponsoring two Vietnam veteran lapel-pinning ceremonies on Monday, April 11 in commemoration of the 50-year anniversary of the Vietnam War.
The senators are encouraging their constituents and all interested Michiganders to attend.
“Michigan’s Vietnam veterans, whether drafted or enlisted, served our country with honor. Tragically, too many returned home with little thanks for their service and not much help transitioning to civilian life,” said Kowall, R-White Lake. “This lapel-pinning ceremony is a way to thank and honor veterans of the Vietnam War era and their families for their service and sacrifice on behalf of a grateful nation and the Michigan Legislature.”
The events, made possible by the United States of America Vietnam War Commemoration, will be held at the following times and locations:
Monday, April 11
VFW Post 9656
4120 Piehl Road
Lambertville, MI 48144
Monday, April 11
VFW Post 1138
400 Jones Ave.
Monroe, MI 48161
The symbolism attached to the Commemoration’s Vietnam veteran lapel pins is significant, Kowall said.
“The Commemoration honors all Vietnam veterans, whether they served in-country, in-theater, or were stationed elsewhere during the Vietnam War period,” he said. “All were called to serve and the overwhelming majority of these veterans served honorably and admirably.”
In addition to the lapel pin, Vietnam era veterans will be provided with a poster for their branch of service and “A Grateful Nation Thanks You” bumper sticker.
Kowall and other senators have held numerous lapel-pinning ceremonies, both in Lansing and throughout the state. The ceremonies are often held in a Veterans of Foreign Wars hall or American Legion post. Kowall partners with the senator of the district where the event is being held.
“I want to thank Senator Kowall for leading this effort,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “It has been an honor throughout my career to work and participate with our vets, especially on the Vietnam Veterans Museum and the Memorial Park projects. I look forward to celebrating the service of our Vietnam veterans.”
A special part of the lapel-pinning ceremonies is when the veterans gather for a group photo and indicate their name, branch of service, and dates served.
“It is always a moving time for me when I am able to present the lapel pins and personally thank each veteran for their service,” Kowall said.