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Veterans Day 2012: Honoring Those Who Serve

Campbell Patch wants your Veterans Day stories.

This Sunday, Nov. 11, we celebrate Veterans Day, a national holiday to pay tribute to our military personnel serving or who have served in armed conflicts.

Campbell will be celebrating on Nov. 11, at 9:00 a.m. the completion of Phase 1 of the Campbell Veterans Memorial at the Orchard City Green in front of City Hall.

The memorial has been a work in progress since its inception in 2007. At the Tuesday Campbell City Council meeting, Campbell Veterans Memorial Foundation past president Jim Free led the Pledge of Allegiance and Mayor Mike Kotowski shared his thoughts on the memorial.

"We’ve had weather against us and we’ve had the economy against us but it's there and its happening," Kotowski said. "I am proud today, as a fellow veteran, that we have something to show everyone this Sunday."

There have been about 400 bricks sold to-date with an estimated 8,000 total planned as part of the memorial.

When completed, the Campbell Veterans Memorial site will include a plaza area, a fountain surrounded by U.S. Military service flags, a time line wall of major U.S. conflicts and a larger wall that will encompass an existing olive tree called "The Tree of Peace."

"This isn’t just a memorial for Campbell veterans," Free said. "It honors all veterans, living or deceased. And they don't have to be from Campbell, they can reside anywhere in the world."

The project is now about 50 percent complete, Free said.

"We still have a ways to go, but we're showing the public that this is real and I think it’s pretty neat," he said. 

Also taking place on Nov. 11 is the Santa Clara County United Veterans Council's 94th annual Veterans Day parade in downtown San Jose at noon.

An opening ceremony will take place at 11 a.m. at Plaza de Cesar Chavez. The parade's grand marshal is United States Coast Guard Vice Admiral Paul F. Zukunft.

Many town veterans are participating in the event, including local realtor Mike Frangadakis, chairman of Operation Yellow Ribbon, an organization under the auspices of the afternoon Los Gatos Rotary Club whose purpose is to help local military personnel serving overseas.

The former Vietnam War veteran formed Operation Yellow Ribbon in 2003, after the war in the Middle East started.

The Valley Transportation Authority will also be participating in this year's event.

"Veterans and military families will be marching in the parade alongside a new clean-fuel, VTA Express Bus and Historic Coach #6512, also known as the Rosa Louise Parks Memorial Bus, which was dedicated in memory and in honor of Parks’ courage in the face of oppression," a VTA release stated.

The following VTA Bus lines will be rerouted between 9:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. due to the parade route: 22, 63, 64, 68, 181 and MST 55.   

Also, the South Bay Blue Star Moms will be marching in the parade alongside a military Humvee armed with stars, flags, banners and pictures of their loved ones serving our country.

There's also no school in all of Campbell's districts on Monday, Nov. 12 in honor of Veterans' Day. That includes the Campbell Union, Moreland and Campbell Union High School districts. 

We're inviting military personnel from Campbell to submit photos of their service with a short caption. If you want to add more to the caption, just share in the comments section. We look forward to your participation as we honor our nation's veterans.

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