Bloomsburg University devotes week to honor those in military

BLOOMSBURG — The designation of Nov. 11 as the annual observance of Veterans Day memorializes the end of World War I fighting on Nov. 11, 1918 — the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.

At Bloomsburg University, Veterans Day will be recognized with a full week of activities starting Nov. 7, with yellow ribbons on the Academic Quad, and extending to Nov. 11, with the Veterans Suicide Prevention Walk.

According to Bob Heckrote, academic adviser for military and undeclared students, 437 military students attend BU.

“Military students” are defined as current and former military personnel, their spouses and dependents, and participants in Reserve Officers’ Training Corps, known as ROTC.

The Nov. 7 ribbon display will be a visual representation of the number of students, faculty and staff who served or are serving in the military, said Matt Haberle, president of the Bloomsburg University Student Veterans Association (BUSVA).

Also planned for Nov. 7, is a military information panel at 3 p.m. in McCormick Center, room 1303, with Brig. Gen. Tony Carrelli, Pennsylvania adjutant general, and other armed forces representatives. Adjutant general is a cabinet-level position with the state Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, headquartered at Fort Indiantown Gap, responsible for command, control and supervision of the commonwealth’s National Guard units, state-owned veterans’ homes and programs for Pennsylvania’s veterans.

Poster-sized photographs from the Vietnam War will be displayed Nov. 8 in the lobbies of the Warren Student Services Center and Kehr Union.

Blaine Cooper, of Danville, shot the 35mm slides during his tour of duty in Vietnam and conferred rights to BUSVA in exchange for digitizing the images. A larger display of Cooper’s photos will be exhibited within the next year, Heckrote said.

Military vehicles and gear will be featured in a daylong “Touch a Truck” display Thursday, Nov. 10, near the Academic Quad. The event may include a Kiowa helicopter landing on the quad. The Marine Corps birthday also will be observed on Nov. 10.

Events on Veterans Day, Nov. 11, will begin with a free breakfast for military students, faculty, staff and supporters followed by the Veterans Suicide Prevention Walk at the Academic Quad. Haberle, a junior accounting major from East Stroudsburg, said an average of 20 veterans commit suicide each day.

Members of BUSVA, BU military faculty and staff, military supporters and Delta Kappa Epsilon (DKE) brothers will walk to raise suicide awareness and funding for the National Alliance to End Veteran Suicide. Participants will walk a mile for every $20 raised, with a goal of $3,500.

For more information, contact Heckrote, or 570-389-4696.