Purvis VFW honors area Vietnam veterans

By BUSTER WOLFE,

Fourteen of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3955’s 23 Vietnam veterans were recognized Tuesday at the Purvis chapter’s headquarters for their service.

The veterans received copies of “A Time to Honor: Stories of Service, Duty, and Sacrifice,” a 50-year commemoration of the Vietnam War. The book is a project of The Friends of Mississippi Veterans and the Mississippi State Veterans Affairs Board.

Stephen H. Moore, the Hattiesburg field representative for U.S. Rep. Steven Palazzo, presented each veteran with a copy of the book. Palazzo is a Mississippi Republican who represents the 4th District.

James “Jay” Statham, a member of the VFW Post and Lamar County Veterans Service Officer, said he had been working almost a year to coordinate the event.

“This book is really special for our veterans,” he said. “It is really special for me because as I came up in the military, a lot of my senior NCOs (non-commissioned officers) were Vietnam veterans. I learned from them, and this is sort of a payback to them to honor their service.

“They taught us a lot, and I owe a lot of what I know to them.”

Statham said he will deliver the commemorative to the other Vietnam veterans who were unable to attend the service.

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