There have been few times in my life that I felt appreciated as a Vietnam veteran, but last night at the Merced County Fair ranks on top of that short list. The theme, "Thank You, Veterans," was prominent.
I'd like to give a big shout out to Tom Musser, the CEO of the fair, and those who worked to make it happen, but I especially want to thank the community for its display of appreciation.
The opening ceremony and dedication of the new flag pole, which included stories from veterans who landed on Iwo Jima as well as Normandy Beach, as well as seeing Merced's Tony Soria, a Pearl Harbor survivor, dressed in the uniform that he shares with his brother, was quite moving.
And to find out that the new flag pole was completely funded by the local Japanese American Citizen's League was very touching. The bagpipes at closing made many people cry.
I would like to thank all the veterans, but I also add a thank you to the Merced community for making me proud to be an American and a resident of Merced.