Wednesday was Vietnam Veterans Day and local vets were honored at the Pennsylvania Soldiers and Sailors home during a pinning ceremony and some are saying this is long overdue.
51 residents of the Pennsylvania Soldiers and Sailors home are Vietnam era veterans that were being honored and recognized for their service.
The Erie community and local elected officials were in attendance to show their appreciation for these individuals.
“It’s really significant since the population here at the home now has kind of turned to that Vietnam era veterans, we felt that it was significant to make sure we took this day to acknowledge their service and sacrifice and to be able to recognize them in front of the community,” said Ken Vybiral, volunteer coordinator at Pa Soldiers and Sailors home.
The Vietnam era vets were being recognized with their name called and then receiving a pin and certificate.
One local veteran said another way they were being honored Wednesday – but more so in a nostalgic manner.
“One of the radio stations is playing some music from our era which is kind of special,” said Dennis Newara of Vietnam veterans of America Chapter 435.
Newara considers the recent recognition of the vets to be a turning point in society.
“It’s special in the sense that after all these years the last few years we’ve been getting more recognition and it hits home hits the heart,” Newara went on to say.
The volunteer coordinator of the Pennsylvania Soldiers and Sailors home said the recognition for these veterans here today is long overdue.
“I think it signifies that as a country we’ve come to terms with how they were treated when they returned recognize that wasn’t the best response and a lot of efforts have been made since then to make sure that those errors aren’t repeated again,” Ken Vybiral declared.