Piedmont Community College students, faculty, staff, and visitors attended a Veterans Day celebration on the Person County campus on Tuesday, November 10. During the ceremony, the Presentation of Colors was conducted by the American Legion Post 138.
Fred Smith - Veterans Day Announcement
PCC student Karma L. Karangelen also shared her thoughts of Veterans Day in an essay read by Wayne Cohan, Dean, Arts and Humanities.

“For me, [Veterans Day] means that I get to celebrate the life of the many men [and women] who have given up everyday life to protect our great country. My father served in the Vietnam War in the Army…. my brother volunteered after the 9/11 attacks and served in the Navy,” Karangelen wrote. “My heroes wear military green, dark blue, and tan. They don’t wear capes and jerseys. They protect our country from the worst things in the world. This day we are celebrating the freedoms that they gave us.”

A special announcement was also made during the ceremony by Fred Smith, Commander, VFW Post 7316. He announced that PCC’s Learning Resources Centers (LRC) will house a collection of Veteran video interviews created by volunteers of the North Carolina Military Veterans Oral History Project.

Over 80 interviews have been collected, with nearly 60 of these video now available for public viewing at both the Caswell County and Person County campuses. These profound interviews were conducted by Smith and two other North Carolina Military Veterans Oral History Project volunteers, Rusty Edmister, Vietnam Veteran and Bernardine “Bernie” Donato Retired USN/USAF.

“The Veterans Archival Collection is a major coup for Piedmont Community College,” commented Dr. Joyce Johnson, Vice President, Instruction and Student Development. “This Collection is a gold mine for historians studying and writing about the experiences of veterans of the various wars in which America was involved. First-hand accounts of veterans’ experiences in the Korean, Iraq, Persian Gulf, Kosovo, and Afghanistan wars, in particular, have been largely unavailable on the community level until now. As a historian who has relied heavily on these types of archival collections to recount the experiences of antiwar advocates, the Veterans Archival Collection presents a major research opportunity for scholars writing about the experiences of veterans or persons who simply want to know more about veterans and what they endured during a particular War. The Collection is indeed an excellent addition to Piedmont Community College’s Learning Resources Center’s Archives.”

A copy of each interview will be available at the LRC in Building H on the Person County Campus and the LRC in Building K on the Caswell County Campus.

“These videos capture the true history of our Veterans’ experiences while serving our great nation. Without their sacrifice you can imagine what America and the world would be like. All Veterans should be praised and thanked personally for their service. The video of each Veteran should be shared with the younger generation; they need to know what made our nation great and free. We, as Americans, have to understand our freedoms and who stood up for this freedom all over the world,” shared Smith.

The mission of the Oral History Project is to record individual military histories. The volunteers believe that every American who served in the military helped write America’s history. Each American who served in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard has a unique set of individual experiences that deserve to be permanently recorded.

To learn more about the Veterans Oral History project, visit www.ncvetoralhistory.org. If you are a Veteran and have an interest in being interview or would like to become a volunteer, please contact Fred Smith at (336) 514-1521 or fsmith7143@embarqmail.com.

Photo: Fred Smith, Commander, VFW Post 7316, announced that PCC’s Learning Resources Centers (LRC) will house a collection of Veteran video interviews created by volunteers of the North Carolina Military Veterans Oral History Project.

For more photos, visit PCC’s Facebook page.

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