Sunny skies greeted more than 200 people who attended the annual Veterans Day ceremony at East Carolina University on Nov. 11.
A total of 58 pavers were dedicated at the Memorial Walk, including six honoring the Warren brothers from Robersonville who served more than 75 combined years and saw combat from World War II through the Vietnam War. The last paver laid was for Ben, a military dog who served two tours in Afghanistan. Ben is now retired and lives on a Lenoir County farm with his adoptive parents, Kim and Paul Scarborough.
“It’s important to pay tribute to the men and women who have served,” said Dr. Steve Duncan, director of military programs at ECU.
The paver campaign raises money for Army and Air Force ROTC student scholarships and is sponsored by the ECU College of Health and Human Performance and the Office of Military Programs.
More than 900 veterans are enrolled at ECU, Duncan said, and more are expected to attend as returning military service members use their GI Bill benefits.
Lt. Col. Roxane Engelbrecht and Lt. Col. Joseph Pierce, ROTC commanders at ECU, spoke on why they serve. The cadets and cadre of ECU’s ROTC program helped with the day’s events, including Cadet Kelsey Page, who rang the Victory Bell at the Freedom Wall as each honoree’s name was called and their brick was laid near Christenbury Gym.
More than 250 people have been recognized through the paver campaign. Ben’s brick is the first at the site honoring a war dog.