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Louisiana pauses to honor, recognize veterans on Veterans Day

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BATON ROUGE – On November 11, veterans across Louisiana are being recognized for their service.

One location that stands as a symbol of patriotic service to the country is Louisiana's USS KIDD. 

The ship, a Fletcher-class destroyer, was the first of the United States Navy to be named after Rear Admiral Isaac C. Kidd, who lost his life on the bridge of his flagship USS Arizona during the 1941 Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. 

Admiral Kidd was the first US flag officer to die during World War II, and the first American admiral ever to be killed in action. 

The ship now serves as a symbol in the community and a site where significant pieces of military history are preserved.  

Included among its featured memorabilia is the Purple Heart, which is a military decoration awarded in the name of the President to those wounded or killed while serving, on or after April 5, 1917, with the U.S. military.

One veteran, First Sgt. Roosevelt B. Gibson, said of the Purple Heart, "To me it's the highest honor that you can receive... they cannot give you this, you have to earn it... Once they give you the purple heart nobody can take it away." 

Gibson is a fourth generation veteran, following in the footsteps of his father, grandfather, and great-grandfather by serving in the armed forces before returning to Louisiana to work as a teacher.

Now, every Veterans Day he uses the observation to ponder over his military career and the service of his fellow comrades. 

Local officials are, likewise, honoring military personnel on Veterans Day.

Governor John Bel Edwards, for example, posted a special Veterans Day video message to military personnel on his Facebook Page.

Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry also issued the following Wednesday morning statement in recognition of Veterans Day:

To my fellow veterans: I salute you, the brave men and women of America who have sacrificed, fought, and - in some cases - gave their lives to defend our great nation. May we never forget your sacrifice and always remember the dedication and sacrifice of our veteran families. As your Attorney General, I promise to continue doing all that I can to assist our veterans and their families. I pray all of Louisiana takes time during this day to thank and honor those who have served our country.”

AG Landry also reminded Louisiana of his office’s Resource Guide for Service Members and Veterans - a reference point for a range of programs and assistance including charitable, medical, legal, educational, and other resources which supply the most reliable and reputable services to veterans, active service members, reservists, and their family members.

Veterans Day, originally known as Armistice Day, is observed annually in the US on November 11 in recognition of persons who have served in the United States Armed Forces and were discharged under conditions other than dishonorable.


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