Elkhorn City officials honor veterans in multiple ways

PIKE COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - Officials in Elkhorn City held a dinner at the Community Center to honor local veterans.

Around 100 veterans came out to warm up, eat, and share stories.

"We have been wanting to do this for years and I would love to see this done on every cemetery," said Elkhorn City Mayor Mike Taylor.

Officials added more than 165 American flags to every veteran grave in a nearby cemetery.

"My heart just warms up and is about ready to burst. I think it is absolutely wonderful to hear all of the stories they have to tell and one good thing about it is, they all come back alive," explained Mayor Taylor.

Like 92-year-old World War II veteran Roy Owens.

"People here don't realize what they've got," exclaimed Owens.

Owens says he is thankful to be able to share stories with other veterans at events like this.

He talked to WYMT about some of his most painful memories.

"Concentration camps, people starved to death, people beat to death, and to me, that's still in my mind," recalled Owens.

Along with the good memories, like 71 years of marriage.

"When I came out in December '46, (the) first date with her," Owens pointed out.

Although he does not remember what movie they watched, he does remember her seating preference.

"They had sweetheart seats where you could sit close. She wouldn't sit in the sweetheart seats with me. She had to have a rail between us before she would go with me," Owens recalled.

Drafted into the U.S. Army in 1969, Veteran David Sanders says each veteran is connected.

"Well, there's always a common bond just in the sense that they have had similar experiences that you have had," said Sanders.

Sanders told WYMT, it does not matter when or how long you serve.

"A country can only remain sovereign and independent and free only if they have individuals who are willing to serve and sacrifice and defend our freedom," explained Sanders.

Inside the community center during the dinner, there was a wall made up of local veterans photos from when they served.
Many who attended the event say the wall serves as a good reminder of the past and the present.

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