SDSU Honors Fallen Military with Annual Wreath Laying Ceremony

Story Number: NNS121014-03Release Date: 10/14/2012 1:22:00 AM
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By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class (SW/AW) T. J. Ortega, Navy Public Affairs Support Element West

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- San Diego State University (SDSU) held its annual War Memorial Monument Wreath Laying Ceremony on campus, Oct. 12, paying tribute to SDSU military alumni who have paid the ultimate sacrifice.

The ceremony hosted nine special guest speakers, including Commander, Navy Region Southwest Rear Adm. Dixon Smith.

"All who have served in this cause are liberators in the highest calling of America," said Smith. "Their valiant actions have made our nation safer in a world full of new and unpredictable dangers. Our military men and women have superb training, the best equipment, and able commanders. They have another great advantage," Smith added. "They have the example of American veterans who came before them."

The SDSU Reserve Officer Training Corps assisted in the ceremony by standing guard over the memorial and laying down the wreaths presented from numerous groups on campus, including SDSU's Student Veteran Organization.

"The members of the Student Veterans Organization here at San Diego State University hold a special place in our hearts for these warriors. Many of us have served in the same theaters of operation," said the organization's president Todd Kennedy, a retired Marine first sergeant.

Multiple wreaths and flowers were laid next to a three-sided obelisk monument, which stands 25 feet tall and is broken at the top signifying a life ended too soon.

"We can never thank our military enough for their service, for taking care of others, and for protecting our freedom," said Elliot Hirshman, SDSU President. "Our commitment to the values of the fallen must be as great as the sadness of their passing. I ask we recommit ourselves to keep their memories alive, to comfort the loved ones of the fallen, and to welcome and support our returning veterans, their brothers and sisters."

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