On Veteran’s Day, the North Reading and Tewksbury Veteran’s Departments and North Reading Veterans Events Committee held a dinner for Massachusetts veterans and their families. Speakers included local North Reading and Tewksbury representatives, congressman Seth Moulton and colonel Cheryl Poppe, secretary of the Department of Veteran’s Services.
Susan Magner, veterans director for North Reading, put the event together and served as master of ceremonies.
A number of local officials, including representatives Dave Robertson and Brad Jones Jr.; senator Bruce Tarr; and Select Board members Jay Kelly, James F. Mackey, Anne Marie Stronach and Jayne Wellman, were in attendance, along with veterans of all branches of the military. Mackey is a U.S. Army veteran.
The Tewksbury Country Club was decorated with large American flags, and the U.S. Marine Corps Color Guard accompanied the flags of the service branches. Sergeant Major Ken Oswald directed the Marine Corps JROTC Drill Team, and Kerrin Mullen did a stirring rendition of the National Anthem that Moulton called one of the best he has heard.
The most moving part of the evening was a ceremony honoring America’s service members who are missing in action. According to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency, there are more than 70,000 missing personnel from past conflicts.