Honor and respect

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Community members gather today for one thing.

No, it's not the free meal they've been promised, although that is a perk. They gather to recognize those who proudly have put their lives on the line for the defense of the United States of America.

The Craig Daily Press hopes to humbly honor veterans' sacrifices with the Hometown Heroes Picnic, which begins at 11 a.m. today.

KRAI, Coca-Cola, City Market, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Elks Lodge and American Legion also sponsor the picnic, and they invite community members to come to Craig City Park for free hot dogs, hamburgers, side dishes and drinks.

The idea is to recognize those who died in the name of freedom, who served and returned home to their families and those who are currently serving overseas.

Picnic attendees will also hear from the VFW post commander, who will read poems he wrote during his 26 years of military experience.

A mother who said goodbye to her son, a Marine, on Friday will speak about the nightmares she has from knowing he is fighting on the other side of the world.

Everyone in attendance will take a few moments to recall those who have lost their lives in the name of liberty and justice.

It's bound to be a powerful day.

We plan the picnic for Armed Forces Day, a day in which veterans might not usually be properly recognized. True, there are numerous holidays dedicated to their service -- Veterans Day, Memorial Day, Fourth of July -- but we don't think military personnel can be honored enough.

Americans in the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force and Coast Guard selflessly serve our country each day and night. We cannot ask more of them.

But we can remember to tell them how much we appreciate their sacrifices so we can live freely in a country we love.

We hope the Hometown Heroes picnic is a modest way to show the veterans of our community how respected and honored they are.

We hope you'll join us in this pursuit.

See you at City Park.

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