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Members of the Ava VFW Post 5993 were busy over Veterans Day weekend. It started on Thursday, Nov. 10 when the veterans participated in the high school assembly honoring all veterans.
Members of the VFW posted the colors prior to the assembly. During the assembly Larry Morrison, commander, and Judy Hutchison, president of the Ladies Auxiliary, presented a certificate and a check to two winners of the Voice of Democracy essay contest. The honor guard then recovered the colors at the completion of the assembly functions.
On Friday morning, Nov. 11, the VFW was again honoring all veterans with an honor ceremony and laying of a wreath at the Veteran Memorial at the Ava Cemetery. During that ceremony, the VFW and members of the American Legion jointly participated in the ceremony.
The VFW honor guard joined the honor guard from the American Legion to display the American flag, the POW/MIA flag and the post flags of each organization.
Bill Henry, a veteran of the Viet Nam war, was the guest speaker. Upon completion of the speech and the laying of the wreath, the American Legion Honor Guard presented a 21-gun salute. After the ceremony at the cemetery was completed, the VFW honor guard then convened at the Ava Elementary school, where they, once again, participated in an assembly for the elementary students in which the veterans were celebrated and honored through the Pledge of Allegiance and patriotic songs.
On Sunday, Nov. 13, Ava Victory Academy sponsored a luncheon for all veterans. This event was attended by veterans from WWII, Korea, Viet Nam and Middle East. The American Legion posted the flags, and the VFW honor guard conducted a “white table ceremony” which honors all POW/MIA veterans. In this ceremony, Jerry Garrison displayed each item on the table as Larry Morrison, commander, detailed what each item represents for the veterans and families of veterans.
After a delicious lunch which was served by families from Ava Victory Academy, Larry Morrison, commander, and Judy Hutchison, president of the Ladies Auxiliary, once again, presented winners of the Voice of Democracy and Patriots Pen essay contests with certificates, pens and checks.
Winners of the awards from both Ava Victory and Ava High School will be eligible for the state level and ultimately the national level. The winner of the national Voice of Democracy contest will receive a $10,000 scholarship.
Members of the Ava VFW are also spearheading a fundraising activity to help a WWII veteran, who is not eligible for city services, to install a septic system. This will allow the veteran and his wife to utilize their house for cooking, showering and bathroom facilities.
A soup, salad and dessert lunch is being offered by members of the VFW this coming Sunday, Dec. 4, beginning at 11 a.m.
The lunch is by donation only and all money raised will go to help pay for the septic system for this 88-year-old war hero. Several types of soup will be served and hot dogs will be available for youngsters or those not wanting soup. In addition there will be drinks and desserts for all attending. Lunch will begin at 11 a.m. at the Ava High School Cafeteria and will continue until 2 p.m.
At 2 p.m. there will be music in the Performing Arts Center. Both the lunch and the music are free to the public. The VFW, though, is asking for a donation of any amount.
Several individuals have offered to prepare the food, but there is still a need for food and volunteers to help serve. If anyone is interested in participating in this event, you may contact Doris Haynes at 683-4447 or Larry Morrison, 683-0188.