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Club observes Veterans Day at Hagerstown Community College

The event was held in the Student Center and paid homage to veterans for their service

November 08, 2012|By CALEB CALHOUN | caleb.calhoun@herald-mail.com
  • Chuck Martin leads Marine Corps League Antietam Detachment members Don Muffley, Mike Nakopoulos and William Reel in the Presentation of Colors at the Veterans Day Celebration held at Hagerstown Community College Thursday morning in the Student Center.
By Yvette May, Staff Photographer

A flag that flew over the United States Capitol is now at Hagerstown Community College after a Veterans Day event Thursday.

Put on by the Veterans Club at HCC, the event was held in the Student Center and paid homage to veterans for their service in advance of Veterans Day, which is Nov. 11.

“A lot of people don’t realize the total number of veterans that are here on campus,” Veterans Club President Allen Calvert said. “If they’re no longer in the military, we just look like the average person unless we’re wearing our uniform.”

Calvert, 57, is in his second year at HCC double-majoring in Business Management and Alternative Energy Technology. The Rohrersville resident was part of the U.S. Army and Military Police Corps from 1974 to 1995, and he helped start the Veterans Club at HCC his first year there.

“This is a way to bring veterans recognition,” he said. “We had a small observation of Veterans Day last year, and this year we wanted to put together a larger presentation.”

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The program began with a presentation of colors by the Bulldog Detachment of the Marine Corps League.

Mike Nakopoulos, Color-Guard commander of the Antietam Detachment of the Marine Corps League, said the event could help to “spark American pride.”

“Hopefully it gets people more involved in support of our veterans,” he said. “You’ve got people out there that haven’t come home, that are still missing, and that are dying right now. It’s very important for HCC to come together and remember what we have, why we have it, and why we will continue to have these things because of our veterans.”

A flag was presented to the school with a certificate from U.S. Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., stating that the flag flew over the U.S. Capitol for the club at her request.

U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd class Anish Kamble, of Hagerstown, an Alternative Energy Technology major at HCC, said the presentation of the flag showed that people were thinking about veterans.

“To me it symbolizes gratitude from our elected officials,” said Kamble, 25. “We’ve got support here, and as veterans we’ve got the support of each other.”

U.S. Army Communications Installer Sgt. Mark L. Goodnight of Hagerstown said the event could help draw attention to veterans from the school.

“There are those who may not know the presence of veterans at HCC,” he said. “This honors and respects those who have done our job in the past, those who are doing our job now, and those who will do our job in the future.”

Goodnight, 48, said he also was honoring those military members who have died.

After the event, the documentary “Restrepo,” about the deployment of a U.S. platoon in Afghanistan, was shown in the Student Center Conference Room.

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