Wounded Warriors Get Halftime Salute in Hawaii
By Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Cynthia Clark
Defense Media Activity - Hawaii
HONOLULU, Dec. 4, 2013 Wounded warriors were honored at Aloha Stadium here during a Nov. 30 football game between the University of Hawaii’s Warriors and the Black Knights from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.
U.S. Pacific Command’s Joint Color Guard salutes wounded warriors during the football game between the University of Hawaii Warriors and the Black Knights from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point at Aloha Stadium, Honolulu, Nov. 30, 2013. DOD photo by Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Cynthia Clark
(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.
Many dignitaries attended the event, including U.S. Army Pacific commander and West Point graduate, Army Gen. Vincent K. Brooks.
The game was special for several reasons, Brooks said.
“First, the military is being appreciated. I think that’s the most important thing,” Brooks said. “Then, especially, those who have taken on wounds while serving our nation. It’s important to recognize there’s an extra burden that they carry and also to let them know they’re not alone.”
The festivities began before the game with a ceremony honoring Hawaii’s Outstanding Military Spouses for 2013. The wounded warriors and active-duty service members were honored at halftime.
The halftime program kicked off with the U.S. Pacific Command’s Joint Service Color Guard leading soldiers from the 25th Infantry Division, Marines from the Combat Logistics Battalion III from Marine Corps Base Hawaii, sailors from the guided-missile cruiser USS Chosin and airmen from Pacific Air Forces, both stationed at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. The ceremony also included U.S. Coast Guard members from the 14th Coast Guard District.
One of the wounded warriors, information systems technician Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Christian Pollock, served two tours in Iraq, one tour in Afghanistan and one tour in the Arabian Gulf. Pollock currently is stationed here with U.S. Pacific Command.
“I think it’s very important to bring light to the situation,” Pollock said. “People come back who have physical and mental problems, so we need to make sure we take care of our guys when they get back.”
When asked how it felt to be honored by such a large group of people, Pollock responded, “It always feels good when you’re appreciated for your hard work.”
After halftime the Black Knights continued to give their all, but at game’s end they were outscored by the Warriors, 49-42.