Subject: Veterans Day Salute 2014
Author: Col Hawkins' Salute 2014
Date:   11/11/2014 10:59 pm EDT

Today I have the honor as Col. Benjamin Hawkins to participate in one of our Nation’s most needed of all celebrations- a day for honoring our country’s noble veterans, whose dedication to duty & service has been displayed by generations throughout our history. We salute them all with deep gratitude and recognize that without this day, no other celebrations in America would be possible.

I must thank the Fort Hawkins Commission, and with Commission Chairman Michael Cranford present, I would ask him and the members of the Commission to stand for this thanks. And many thanks of course to the Nathanial Macon Chapter NSDAR for sponsoring such a patriotic event. I must further thank the many patriotic organizations that are participating in today’s Salute. The American flags that you are retiring reflect all of Nation’s veterans – past and present. We salute each of your groups’ dedication in preserving with pride all of this service to our beloved country especially today at Fort Hawkins.

Of course our biggest thanks must go to these many veterans that you represent and remember today. They have paved the road to freedom that makes this day possible. I am proud to have served on Gen. George Washington’s Revolutionary War Staff, thus becoming one of our Nation’s very first veterans. I am humbled that my final resting place on the Flint River, marked by a marble veteran’s memorial, has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

I am proud that my namesake fort played such a critical role in the 2nd War of Independence, the War of 1812, as both U.S. Army and Georgia Militia Headquarters. It is an amazing historical continuity of the citizen soldier’s dedication and service to country so although the 48th Brigade GNG could not be with us, we salute their continued service to our great Nation.

I must mention two recent dedications to veterans at Fort Hawkins. Today you will have the extreme pleasure of enjoying the new Fort Hawkins Visitor Center. Please note that the new flag pole is dedicated to Sgt. Constantine Perkins, Pvt. Baily Chandler, and Lt. Asa Jordan, all veterans of the War of 1812’s Creek War and all ancestors of your own Judy Wall Smith, Commission Vice Chairman and Chapter Historian,

Furthermore, today you will bear witness to a new fort resource, and perhaps the best seat in Macon, made possible by a group of devoted Fort Friends and proud Veterans. Today we dedicate a new handsome granite “Welcome Home” Bench from the Middle GA Chapter of the Vietnam Veterans of America. Would those Chapter members and all Veterans from the Vietnam era please stand for your eternal thanks and deserved recognition.

So what better place to have this observance than at the very place that the first veterans served in Middle GA 200 years ago, and are still serving today. We will not forget the legacy begun at Fort Hawkins and continued with Camp Hope, both Camp Wheelers, Miller Air Field, Cochran Air Field, our Confederate defenders, the U.S.S. Macons –both airship and warship, and today’s Robbins Air Force Base.

Everday day in Middle GA being Armed Forces Appreciation Day has been going on a long time here and we have been blessed with a proud military tradition in Middle GA stretching back to the American Revolution and even into the Outer Spaces with Astronaut Sonny Carter.

No matter how many stars our veterans have served under, their service to our country has insured that our “life, liberty, & pursuit of happiness” has continued and prospered. Today we salute them with pride & joy for making our country and world a better place.

The flags being retired today should be seen as living reminders of our veterans’ service throughout our Nation’s history. As we lovingly offer the flags to the flame, may the fire of remembrance and reverence be rekindled forevermore for Fort Hawkins and all of nation’s veterans. God Bless You for attending. God Bless America and God Bless America’s veterans!

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 Topics Author  Date      
 Veterans Day Salute 2014    
Col Hawkins' Salute 2014 11/11/2014 10:59 pm EDT
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