By Tamas Mondovics

The Veterans Memorial Park and Museum Committee is pleased to announce the date and time for the upcoming Afghanistan Memorial dedication ceremony to be held later this fall.

The event is scheduled for Saturday, October 7 at 10 a.m. at Hillsborough County’s Veterans Memorial Park and Rear Adm. LeRoy Collins, Jr. Veterans Museum at 3602 N. Highway 301 in Tampa.

The committee was also pleased with the commitment of General Joseph L. Votel, who agreed to be the keynote speaker for the event.

According to Afghanistan Memorial Committee member Mark Goujon the long awaited memorial is to honor Hillsborough County’s 16, and Florida’s 135 Fallen and Veterans of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF).

“The Veterans Park Committee is grateful for the success of its recent war memorial dedication ceremonies,” Goujon said.

Such recent events include the Iraq Veterans Memorial dedication ceremony held on December 14, 2013, honoring all those that took part including Florida’s 151 fallen in Operation Enduring Freedom 2001-2014.

The Department of Consumer and Veterans Services, the Veterans Council of Hillsborough County, and the Museum and Parks Committee also presented a special ceremony and gathering last month in honor of those who served and died in Korea, “The Forgotten War.”

Event invitees included all branches of service and their families, especially U.S. military men and women who served and died in Korea.

“The June 24 gathering marked the 67th anniversary of the start of the Korean War, sometimes called “The Forgotten War” for its lack of public awareness as compared to other U.S. conflicts,” Goujon said.

The special event featured Col. Changhun Lee, ROK Army Senior Nation Representative to U.S. Central Command, Don Yong Shin, Past President, Korean Association of West Florida, Kenneth Kim, Pastor, First Korean Presbyterian Church of Tampa, POW/MIA Missing Man Ceremony by the Korean War Veterans of America, Chapter 175 and Rifle salute and taps by Sgt. Walter P. Ryan Detachment 1226, Marine Corps League, in Riverview.

For more information, please contact Hillsborough County Consumer and Veterans Services at 246-3170.

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