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Christopher Hartwell @SILIENCESEEN

A solemn feeling swept the audience as the words of veterans filled the air. Iraq War veteran Jim Zenner and Vietnam War veteran John McPartland spoke at this event held in the Mertes Theater on Nov. 11, 2016.

For the veterans present, a topic of interest was about how they came back from war and entered into the workforce.

Reintegrating with society is difficult now, but in the past that integration was nearly impossible. McPartland said, “As far as integrating after we had come back from Vietnam, most of us didn’t.”

Both veterans emphasized how important support for our veterans is, and how we should respect and appreciate the sacrifices that were made. They also emphasized the costs of not having support through stories about friends and fellow soldiers who weren’t so lucky. McPartland said that after the war, “Most of us crawled into a hole and pulled the lid in over ourselves and we wouldn’t admit that we were veterans at all.”

One student Abby Schullerts had a few thoughts regarding this event. Schullerts feels that this sort of an event is really important to have and said “Being able to give back and remember those who served, especially the older vets, it’s good to appreciate them.”

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