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Veteran wants community to honor ex-servicemen

By By Steve Gillespie / staff writer
Sunday, Nov. 10, 2002
Jim Swartz of Meridian would like to see the community take a greater interest in Veterans Day.
Swartz, a spokesman for the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 79, has helped plan the Veterans Day program and parade in Meridian for several years. Veterans Day is Monday.
Swartz, 56, met with The Meridian Star editorial board last week to talk about this year's Veterans Day activities and parade, as well as other veterans issues.
A U.S. Army veteran, Swartz began his military service in 1967 as a Green Beret serving in Vietnam. He retired from the military in 1992 after serving in the U.S. Army Air Defense Corps during the Gulf War.
Swartz said this year's Veterans Day parade will have fewer entries than last year when the parade and day's events rode a wave of patriotism that followed the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
Even though local schools will participate in the parade with bands and ROTC units, Swartz said many veterans believe schools should be closed for the holiday.