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A reason to salute our service people

Aug. 31 marks the anniversary of the declaration of Armed Forces Day. Armed Forces Day was established in 1949 to create one day that acknowledges all branches of the armed services. Armed Forces Day is celebrated in May every year, but I thought that the anniversary of the day being established was a good enough reason to highlight our local military personnel.

This week’s paper includes a two-page article that showcases our friends and neighbors who have served or who are currently serving in the armed forces.

Putting this article together has been such a cohesive action by so many people. In addition to our dynamite team here at the Valley Sun of page designers, I would like to thank Sevan Gatsby, an intern from CV High School who has donated her time to scanning the images.

I also want to thank the many parents who have provided us with images and information about their kids that are scattered all over the world. Finally, a huge note of thanks has to be extended to Ellen Young of La Cañada and Ray Larsen from La Crescenta who have put together two books that we refer to as “the bible.”


These two individuals both have sons serving. They are collecting photos, newspaper articles and other information of local service people, then putting them in three-ring binders. These binders are to ensure that a record is kept reflecting the contributions that the foothill community is making in the military. The binders are available to share with churches, clubs and other civic organizations. If you’re interested in doing so, send me an e-mail and I’ll forward it to Ellen and Ray.

Working with Ellen and other parents, I was surprised at the emotion that popped up and out of me when I became aware of the number of kids that are in today’s military. My husband and I have four sons, ages 14, 16, 18 and 25. It’s not difficult as you go through the many pages in “the bible” to replace those faces with those of your own kids. It’s a sobering experience.

I want it made clear from the get-go that today’s article is not a politically-motivated one.

One thing that we have learned from the Vietnam experience is that we can support our troops without necessarily supporting the war. This is an important distinction because our troops are made up of people who have such diverse opinions on the current conflicts in which our country is engaged. The common thread that unites them, however, is a sense of duty.


I invite you to visit today’s CV Life section on pages A20-21 to become acquainted with a handful of the neighborhood kids that we were able to squeeze into two pages.

There are so many more out there and I hope my apology is accepted by parents of those kids that we couldn’t fit in.

One final thought: The CV Town Council is working to purchase and install banners along Foothill Boulevard of our “Hometown Heroes.”

This a great way to make a public declaration of support for our military people. Please consider making a financial contribution. Visit their website at for details.