BOSCAWEN — More than 1,000 people, many of them veterans, listened as a New Hampshire general asked for praise for the families of soldiers at the Veterans Day ceremony at the New Hampshire Veterans’ Cemetery in Boscawen on Monday.
“We honor these veterans and their families, because millions of family members don’t raise their hand,” yet provide support for their veterans at home and at veterans’ centers “every day,” Brig. Gen. Deborah L. Carter, the chief of staff of the N.H. Air National Guard, said.
Carter reminded those gathered that there are 23.2 million veterans in the United States at present.
Gov. Maggie Hassan said veterans are the guarantors of democracy.
“Your strength and bravery honor us all,” she said.
U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen said she had recently been giving veterans and deceased veterans’ families their overdue combat medals.
“Each medal told a story of service,” she said.
Veterans “exemplify selflessness and sacrifice to their country,” Shaheen said.
“To all who have served, we will be forever thankful,” she said.
U.S. Sen. Kelly Ayotte reminded those in attendance that there are still 60,000 troops serving in Afghanistan.
“We are great because of you and the families who support you,” she said.
Veteran Dave Oulette said the celebration brought tears to the eyes of many veterans in attendance, some of whom were brought to Boscawen by bus from the New Hampshire Veterans Home in Tilton.“It’s always very emotional,” he said. “But it’s always good to see the crowds and make new friends.”