Ania Cotton | Staff Writer
This year, the Army ROTC program at Hampton University took initiative to get the campus involved in their Veteran’s Day event by passing out yellow ribbons in the student center.
In previous years, Veteran’s Day has been observed primarily by the Army ROTC students and staff. However, this year they took a different approach by being more inclusive of Hampton University students.
Bethany DeNeal, a sophomore, strategic communications major from Greenville, North Carolina was the lead coordinator for the Veteran’s Day fundraiser. She stated that the table in the student center was, “in honor of and to bring increased awareness to our countless brave U.S. veterans.” In addition to getting yellow ribbons, students were also given the opportunity to give a donation to the Wounded Warriors Fund.
The yellow ribbons symbolize the remembrance of all the fallen soldiers, those who are missing in action (MIA), prisoners of war (POW), or who are on deployment away from home.
Montrey DeLoatch, a fourth year, five-year MBA major from Rougemont, North Carolina currently serves as the Hampton University Army ROTC Public Affairs Officer, and mentioned that, “Veteran’s Day is one of our most important holidays as a program.” In addition to the ribbons being passed out, DeLoatch shared how the ROTC cadets attended a memorial ceremony in the cemetery on campus.
Other members from ROTC program who assisted in the Veteran’s Day Celebration include junior, political science major Brian Battle from LaPlata, Maryland, and freshman computer science major Jamil Campbell, also assisted in creating and distributing yellow ribbons.
Battle says what he was looking forward to most in this year’s celebration was, “raising awareness of the student body to understand what this day is all about.” Campbell said he is excited about, “seeing and speaking to all the veterans, the overall festivities, and patriotism of the day being displayed by all.”
Some of the challenges the ROTC members faced while preparing for the event were staying dedicated to the cause and ensuring there were enough yellow ribbons to leave an impact on the students’ lives. They also prepared for both the memorial ceremony and the Military Appreciation Football game.
All members have stayed dedicated to the mission of Veteran’s Day and have shown their support for veterans while getting the entire campus involved to appreciate the cause.