Alamo Colleges honors military service members on Veterans Day

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Service officer Paul Rodriguez and Post Quartermaster Robert Garza explain the benefits of joining the Veterans of Foreign Wars to nursing freshman Richard Cote Monday in the mall. Cote is a four-year veteran of the Navy and spent six years in the National Guard. VFW programs provide assistance during every stage of a military member’s career.  Photo by Rey Ruiz

Service officer Paul Rodriguez and Post Quartermaster Robert Garza explain the benefits of joining the Veterans of Foreign Wars to nursing freshman Richard Cote Monday in the mall. Cote is a four-year veteran of the Navy and spent six years in the National Guard. VFW programs provide assistance during every stage of a military member’s career. Photo by Rey Ruiz

Campuses host ceremonies and guest speakers Monday and Tuesday.

By Richard Montemayor

sac-ranger@alamo.edu 

In honor of Veterans Day, this college, Palo Alto College and St. Philip’s College will hold ceremonies to honor the men and women who have served in the military.

This college’s Veterans Affairs Office will hold a ceremony from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 11, starting with a procession from Candler Physical Education Center to the mall area.

Guest speakers include Pritz Navaratnasingam, director of the Houston Regional Office for veteran affairs, Texas Rep. Mike Villarreal and city councilman David Medina, said Odell Kelly, coordinator of student successes at the Veterans Affairs Office.

Kelly served in the Marine Corps as a sergeant for eight years in Iraq and Afghanistan.

For more information, call 210-486–0111.

Retired U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Freddie Valenzuela will be the guest speaker at Palo Alto, said Vincent Besquez, coordinator of veteran affairs at Palo Alto and a retired Marine Corps captain.

Valenzuela served for 33 years in Peru, Korea, Colombia, Turkey, Haiti, Kuwait, Grenada, Panama, Germany, El Salvador, Puerto Rico and Somalia. President Barack Obama recently appointed him to the WW1 Centennial Commission.

Palo Alto’s ceremony is from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Nov. 11 in front of the counseling and support center.

“We are encouraging the public who want to come to the ceremony to sign up early,” Besquez said.

Guests can sign up by calling his office at 210-486-3113.

The first 90 people that sign up will receive a commemorative veterans coin and plaque.

After the ceremony, there will be food and refreshments for all in attendance.

Palo Alto College was named a military-friendly school on Victory Media’s list for 2015. The list honors the top 50 percent of more than 8,000 U.S. colleges, universities and trade schools that support America’s military service members and veterans. This is the fourth consecutive year Palo Alto — which has 700 veterans enrolled this semester — has made the list.

St. Philip’s College will host “Women in the Military – Vietnam Era” at 10 a.m. Nov. 10 in the Heritage Room, according to the college’s website.

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