They may be gone, but they are not forgotten.
A special ceremony at Indian Hills Community College honored the men and women who have lost their lives serving for our country. The ceremony included a "Call to Colors", a presentation of the National Anthem and a key note address by Captain John Hintz.
"Today's ceremony was very impressive," Hintz said. "The fact that they celebrated Veteran's Day, but additionally tied in a National Role call where you announce not only the names of the Iowans who were lost in combat, but the Americans who were lost in combat. It was a very moving time for me, I just got back from Afghanistan, lost three of my soldiers in Afghanistan, in the mountians, so to stand here was a very powerful ceremony for me."
To honor those lost in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, a list of over 6,200 names were read. Ottumwa natives Joseph Hamski and Jon Schiller were two of those names. Their parents were on hand to begin the National Roll Call.
"I'm looking at Vietnam veterans in the audience, I'm standing next to parents who lost their sons in Iraq and Afghanistan. And we're here today to read their names," Hintz said. "We owe it to them, and we owe it to every American who served to celebrate the things they do, and to help... They provide us with our freedom, so it's an amazing thing to stand here and do this."
In addition to the roll call, Indian Hills also honored veterans with a "Rememberance Road". The names of the veterans who have fallen since 9/11 line the streets of the school and will remain there until Saturday morning.
Students and staff at the college are also preparing packages to send to soldiers later this month.