Eau Claire vets share what Veterans Day means to them

Published: Nov. 11, 2021 at 8:17 PM CST
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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - On Veterans Day, people honor those who served in uniform.

Across the Chippewa Valley, numerous events honored veterans Thursday.

To veterans, however, the day means more.

“It’s a scheduled day to just be stand up proud and just be happy for what you did. You know, as I was saying, everyday is pretty much Veterans Day for a veteran. We all try to thank each other as we go but today is a day that the nation comes together and publicly shows their appreciation,” U.S. Army veteran Adam Kohls said.

He said in addition to Veterans Day being a time to honor those who served, it’s a chance for vets to reflect on their service.

“There’s events throughout the year that make people reflect a little deeper and Veterans Day is one of them,” Kohls said. “So it brings a lot of veterans back to them serving, the experiences, the trauma, the good things that they’ve done, yeah, so there’s a lot of reflection going on today for veterans as well.”

“Veterans Day is a time for our nation to remember all those who came to the calling, those alive and those who are deceased who answered the call for our nation,” Wisconsin Army National Guard Sgt. Matthew Ward said.

Ward, who has served three tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, said he thinks about those who paved the way for him on Veterans Day.

“We stand tall on the shoulders of those who came before us,” he said. “And all the veterans before us were such tall and strong individuals that we were able to stand much taller because of the foundation that they laid.”

For U.S. Army veteran Rory Schutte, who served during the Vietnam era, Veterans Day brings a sense of pride.

“It makes me feel good,” Schutte said. “When people say, ‘Thank you for your service,’ it really means a lot and if you do the same to another veteran, they appreciate it. They don’t expect it.”

After serving their country, these veterans feel honored people appreciate their sacrifice everyday, but especially on Veterans Day.

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