Every year, the University of South Dakota is involved in celebrating Veterans Day on campus and in the community.
“Veterans Day is one day where we get to show appreciation for the men and women who have fought and risked their own lives and safety for the freedom and well-being of our country,” sophomore Danika Johnson said.
For some students, it is important to spend time with family or friends who have served.
“My father served for our country, so for me, I like to spend time with my family; that’s what is important to us,” senior Eric Gage, a member of the USD Veterans Club, said.
If students aren’t able to spend time with family, the city of Vermillion and USD campus have many events all week long they can attend.
The eighth annual Veterans Community Supper is at 6 p.m. Nov. 7 at the Vermillion Eagles Club. Military Appreciation Day is at noon Nov. 10 during the football game vs. Northern Iowa. The American Legion and VFW will jointly host the Veterans Day Program at 10 a.m. Nov. 12. at the W.H. Over Museum. The Student Veterans Resource Center grand opening will take place at 1:30 p.m. Nov. 13 at the Temporary Student Center in Room 117D.
Sophomore Samantha Thuringer said it is important students participate in Veterans Day activities.
“Veteran’s Day is important because most everybody at least knows somebody, if not a close relative, who has served our country,” she said. “Many students here had relatives who had their lives taken away while protecting America. It is important to give those people a day of honor.”
Johnson is a member of the National Guard, so this holiday affects her and her family personally, she said.
“After going through all of the training of transitioning from civilian to soldier, it really opened my eyes to the intensity and dangerousness of what has to be done in order to keep our freedom,” Johnson said. “Having the opportunity of being in the military has made my appreciation grow for what those men and women have done and are still doing for us.”
It is not only important, but respectful to honor the veterans, Gage said.
“There are a lot of veterans in our community alone,” Gage said. “We don’t always understand what they have felt and what they went through, but those who served are able to share a bond, and it is the least we can do for them after they have done so much for us.”
Johnson said it is important to celebrate Veterans Day to pay respect for those who have fought for the United States.
“It is important to celebrate this holiday because there are few people in the world who are willing to put their life on the line for their country and what they believe in,” Johnson said. “Those who have done so should be honored and shown great appreciation.”