Veterans honored this week


Marshall is celebrating the lives and contributions of its veterans and all veterans in the community with a variety of activities being staged this week in conjunction with Veterans Day, which was Nov. 11.

A Military Appreciation Board is on display in the Memorial Student Center  through Friday, Nov. 14.

“Students, faculty, staff and community members are invited to share messages of appreciation for our military,” said Tommy Reynolds, director of Military and Veterans Affairs.

Photos of loved ones who have served or are serving may be placed on the board, along with the messages, Reynolds said.

On Tuesday the Charleston chapter of the Quilts of Valor Foundation presented a quilt to former Marshall football player Jared Turner, who was injured in 2009 while serving in Iraq, and nearly 30 other veterans in the Marshall and Huntington communities. The presentations took place on the Memorial Student Center plaza.

The mission of the Quilts of Valor Foundation is to cover service members and veterans touched by war with comforting and healing quilts. (See more at http://www.qovf.org.)

The Military Appreciation Board will be on display at the Military Appreciation Day tailgate before the football game with Rice Saturday, Nov. 15, which has a kickoff at 2:30 p.m. The tailgate will be set up between the  Recreation Center and the Sorrell Maintenance Building, and the public is welcome.

Active military or veterans who show their credentials can receive tickets for $10 to the Rice game. Twenty veterans connected to the Marshall community will be honored before the game.

“We will also do a video board recognition as well,” said Aaron Goebbel, associate director of athletics for external affairs.

The Office of Military and Veterans Affairs, under Reynolds’ direction, ensures that the university’s active duty military and veteran men and women have the services and resources needed to achieve their academic goals at Marshall.

“When I came to Marshall, I struggled,” Reynolds said. “Getting into school and going to my classes was a big adjustment from military life to civilian life. So, being able to help them to alleviate some of the problems they have … it’s great. I am one of them; they come in here and they are comfortable and they see me as one of them.”

Military and Veterans Affairs offers:

  • Assistance in applying for benefits;
  • Transition assistance;
  • Advising and enrollment help;
  • Referrals to appropriate academic support services;
  • Veteran Upward Bound program;
  • Yellow Ribbon program;
  • Assessment of needs and programs for veterans and active students;
  • Counseling through the Marshall Counseling Center referrals;
  • A sense of belonging.

One of the more popular recent additions to the university is a student lounge for veterans.

“I am thankful for the lounge because I needed a place to study and be around peers,” said Keith Jackson, a 12-year infantry veteran. “I would not be doing so well without it.”

The lounge, located in Laidley Hall, is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

The Heart of Appalachia Talent Search Program,  ROTC and Veterans Affairs are working together to collect donations for local heroes.  Items will be collected on the Huntington campus through Dec. 5 and presented to the residents of the Barboursville Veterans Home.  Donation boxes are at the following locations:

  • The Memorial Student Center, Smith Hall, Corbly Hall, the Veterans Affairs Office and the Drinko Library

The following items are requested for donation:

  • Shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrushes, shaving lotion/gel, soap/body wash, socks and board games.

Additional information can be found about this project at http://www.marshall.edu/trio/talent-search/hats-program/news/.