Shreveport event honors military veterans

Local News

SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – (11/3/19) Our nation’s heroes are being honored with a special salute in Shreveport.

Veterans fought for our freedoms.

“The freedoms that we have that unfortunately we tend to take for granted, veterans have given,” said Linda Resendez, Veterans for Veterans. “They’ve given time, they’ve given up a certain amount of family life.”

Many also gave their lives.

Veterans for Veterans raises awareness and funds to support former service members at their annual car and bike event Saturday at Riverpark Church.

“There’s so much division in the world today and when you do stuff like this, it brings everyone together,” said Timothy Ross, veteran. “And there’s no bias, there’s no sides to choose from. Everybody’s just here to support.”

Included at the event was a visual representation of solciers’ sacrifice: the Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall. The wall is a smaller-scale replica of the monument in Washington, D.C., honoring lives lost during the conflict.

“That’s why this memorial is so touching,” said Chuck Cornelius. “People just don’t understand what they’ve given for us to be able to come out here today on this nice beautiful day. And for the rest of our lives and enjoy the things that we take for granted every day.”

Cornelius knows one of the more than 58,000 names etched on the wall.

“I come out here for Leonard Kunsman,” said Cornelius. “To honor him for what he has given me today.”

Cornelius and Kunsman were neighbors while growing up in Baltimore. Kunsman enlisted to fight in Vietnam, but never came home. His service left a lasting impact.

“He was one of the older guys that, you know, we tried to emulate,” said Cornelius. “And, you know, he was just somebody like a big brother. Because I didn’t have a brother.”

This mobile memorial serves as a reminder of the true price of freedom.

“There’s a lot of entitlement in the world today, and nothing in this world is free,” said Ross. “You’re not entitled to anything. We aren’t.”

“This is a moment in time that will change your life forever,” said Cornelius. “Whether they knew somebody personally like I did, or don’t, this will change your life. This wall is that important.”

The Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall will be on display at Riverpark Church in Shreveport until Monday.

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