Veterans, active duty members and civilians alike gathered together at the Speaker’s Platform for the Veterans Day Celebration Thursday.
Over 80 people trickled in and out while speeches were being given, eager for the cutting of the cake as the event’s main focus was the Marine Corps’ 243rd birthday Nov. 10.
“It means honoring the people who came before us,” said Marine Corp veteran Nivardo Gonzalez during his speech.
President Jane Close Conoley and Long Beach State believe it’s important to provide services to veterans on campus such as scholarship opportunities, extended healthcare plans, educational benefits, additional employment opportunities and assistance for veterans and dependants, which can all be found on the school’s website.
“I’m just so glad we have the Veterans Services office,” Conoley said. “We talk about inclusive excellence, which to me, our [veteran] services are an example of inclusive excellence.”
During his speech, Gonzalez said he wanted everyone to know that without the armed forces, our country wouldn’t be what it is today.
“[The country] wasn’t built from nothing,” Gonzalez said.
He said he believes civilians should come alongside veterans in their time of need and be aware of mental health difficulties after serving.
“It’s just great to come out and see the campus community really jump in with two feet to honor the sacrifices that veterans have made for this country,” said Navy construction battalion veteran and English major, Brendan Comaty. “I’m proud to be a part of that tradition and I know the veterans on campus really feel welcomed and are very happy to be here because it’s not always easy for us transitioning back.”