(Nov. 7, 2011) -- Following the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, tragedy, The University of Texas at San Antonio has joined a nationwide grass-roots effort to honor American service men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice by losing their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan in the past decade. The special event is call the Remembrance Day National Roll Call.
>> As part of Veterans Day observances, the UTSA Army and Air Force ROTC units will conduct a Pass in Review ceremony at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 10 at Sombrilla Plaza on the Main Campus. The Pass in Review is a long-standing military tradition that began as a way for a newly assigned commander to inspect his troops. The ceremony is open to the public.
>> On Veterans Day, Friday, Nov. 11, campus and community volunteers at more than 100 college and universities across the nation will read the names of the 6,200-plus casualties of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OEF), now called Operation New Dawn. Each campus participating in the Remembrance Day National Roll Call will organize its own reading of names and will observe at 1 p.m. CDT a nationwide minute of silence. More than 178 schools in 50 states plus the District of Columbia will participate in the event.
The Remembrance Day National Roll Call is sponsored nationally by the Veterans Knowledge Community of NASPA Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education. NASPA is a 12,000-member association for the advancement, health and sustainability of student affairs professionals. The Veterans Knowledge Community (VKC) mission is to advocate for best practices to help student veterans make the transition to college and succeed. As the National Roll Call sponsor, the goal of VKC is to have at least one institution in each of the 50 states participate in the event.
Lt. Col. (Ret.) Brett Morris, the national roll call coordinator, said, "We wanted to rally campus communities across the nation to send a powerful message to the troops currently serving that their peers have not forgotten their sacrifices, or those of the fallen."
"The reading of individual names is very poignant because it emphasizes the significance of each and every life lost," said Morris, a retired Army officer and associate director for veterans affairs at Eastern Kentucky University. "Like the names inscribed at the new 9-11 Memorial in New York, each of the fallen deserve to be remembered for their sacrifice. There is no effort to raise money or promote individual programs. The event is simply to honor those who have sacrificed so much on our behalf."
The reading of the names will take more than eight hours to complete as readers announce the names in chronological order.
The iCasualties.org website has been the repository over the last 10 years for the list of servicemembers who died in the line of duty.
For information about the UTSA roll call events, contact Misty Kelley at 210-458-4160. For more information about the National Roll Call effort, email Brett Morris or visit the National Remembrance Day National Roll Call website to see a list of participating schools.
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