To the editor:
On Nov. 8, I had the privilege of attending a standing room only free concert at the Edman Chapel of Wheaton College, featuring the United States Army Field Band & Soldiers’ Chorus. The opening song in this outstanding program was “America the Beautiful” followed by the Pledge of Allegiance and our national anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner."
How refreshing it was to see the entire audience of 2,000 stand with their hands over their hearts or saluting America. There was no kneeling, protests or pickets. Only Americans, from every age, race, religion and ethnic background who were joined together in a visual musical program honoring our country and the men and women who have served in the military.
The timing of this event could not have been more appropriate during Veterans Week. Together, we took a musical journey from the beginning of our great country, through all the wars we have engaged in. We paid tribute to all of the sons and daughters of America who do their jobs every day protecting our country, in an increasingly uncertain world. We saluted all of the American heroes who gave their lives so we could continue to enjoy the benefits of freedom here in our country.
It was extremely touching to see the emotions and applause for all the veterans attending that stood, as their service was acknowledged through their branch of service song. I particularly noticed how many of their spouses, mothers, fathers, grandmothers and friends gently squeezed their hand or leaned over for a gentle kiss on the cheek.
Thank you, Wheaton College, for this grand program, which was a very entertaining and moving experience.
And is America great? You bet!
U.S. Navy veteran