Military veterans honored by Metron of Greenville, Hospice of Michigan

By Kelli Ameling • Last Updated 12:12 am on Saturday, August 11, 2012

Members of the VFW Post 5065 hold an MIA and POW ceremony to honor military veterans who never returned from a war. One VFW member is lighting a candle, which symbolized a lone soldier standing up against an oppressor.

GREENVILLE – Twenty-one military veterans who were community members and patients of Metron of Greenville were honored at a ceremony Friday.

Metron of Greenville teamed up with Hospice of Michigan to hold a ceremony to honor local veterans called We Honor Veterans Pinning Ceremony.

Metron Administrator Deb Gomez said this is the first pinning ceremony her nursing care facility has done for the veterans, but plans to partner with Hospice of Michigan again in the future.

“It’s fantastic,” Gomez said of the partnership and event.

Metron was full with patients and local community members watching as the event unfolded.
The 21 men and women honored received a certificate reflecting their branch of the military and an American flag pin thanking them for their service.

Gomez said Metron began partnering with Hospice of Michigan to help them deal with veterans and help to make them feel more comfortable.

State Rep. Rick Outman reads a ceremonial letter to U.S. Naval veteran Marvin Edwin Carpenter, honoring his service to his country.

She explained as veterans get older, they need help feeling at ease about their experiences in the military. Events like We Honor Veterans Pinning Ceremony helps, she added.

“It’s an ongoing partnership,” Gomez said. “It’s amazing what we have learned.”
Katherine Morrison of Hospice of Michigan said they are planning to do more events like this in the area, including Belding and Cedar Springs.

POW, MIA also honored

Also honored at the ceremony were soldiers missing in action and prisoners of war.

A table, which had many symbolic items on it, was set for the missing soldiers.

The white cloth that covered the table symbolized the purity of the soldiers intentions. A candle on the table represented the frailty of a lone soldier standing up against its oppressors. The ribbon on the candle reminded people the soldier is not coming home.

A lone rose on the table stood for the loved ones and families who keep the faith and wait their return. The napkins stood alone to show the emptiness in the hearts of loved ones. A slice of lemon reminds people of the bitter fate if soldiers are not brought home, along with the salt resembling families tears.

The inverted glass reminds loved ones the soldiers will not be there to drink a toast or join in festivities.

The ceremony ended with the traditional military funeral song, “Taps,” played by a member of the VFW Post 3794 and a rifle volley by the American Legion Post 101.

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