“Today we get to celebrate those who have served and answered their nation’s call to war, as the case may be, and to really honor the service of those who have served in peacetime and in war,” said Lt. Col Shawn Dodge, head of the East Tennessee State University ROTC program.
“It’s a unique privilege to be the keynote speaker. It’s a true honor and privilege to be amongst other war heroes and to be here at the Johnson City war memorial to talk about to talk about service and to honor those who have served,” he said.
Dodge said he’s proud of the ETSU program and how well it’s doing and the caliber of officers who have come from that program.
“It’s in large part due to the administration, the other veterans who have served, those who have supported ....17 general officers have come through that small ROTC program. Many of them give back in meaningful ways,” he said.
Seeing the large gathering for Veterans Day at the memorial, Dodge said it was a proud moment “to see the camaraderie, to see the support. It’s phenomenal. Many of them who came back, certainly from Vietnam, didn’t get this recognition for their service they earned and deserved at that time.
“Days like today are really nice, tying back in the appreciation of the community, the appreciation of their fellow citizens for what they’ve done.”