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Arizona to Pay Tribute to Fallen Sons and Daughters

By K.L. Vantran
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Oct. 31, 2003 – Arizonans will pay tribute to their sons and daughters who died fighting the global war on terrorism with a special memorial service this Veterans Day.

Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano has designated November as "Remember Our Troops and Their Families Month."

An Enduring Freedom memorial service is scheduled for 1 p.m. Nov. 11 at Steele Indian Park in Phoenix. The occasion, according to a press release from the governor's office, is believed to be the first memorial service in the country sponsored by a state in honor of military personnel who have died in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The Governor's Iraqi War Memorial Commission organized the event. The memorial is being funded through private contributions, and is open to the public.

"This will be a somber, yet important occasion honoring our nation's fallen military," said Napolitano. "It's critical that we remember these fine Arizonans on the day set aside to pay tribute to all military lost in war and other actions."

All branches of the armed services will be represented at the service, which will include a 21-gun salute and a flyover by Apache helicopters. Local celebrity and Army veteran Pat McMahon is slated to preside at the ceremony.

Individuals being honored are: Nathan White, Joshua McIntosh, William T. Latham, Lori Piestewa, Nate Caldwell, Sean Cataudella, Alyssa R. Peterson, Spencer Karol, Jay Aubin, Fernando Padilla-Ramirez, Michael J. Williams and Raymond Losano.

The mayor of Flagstaff, Ariz., Joseph Donaldson, issued a proclamation for Veterans Day. He called upon citizens, schools and businesses to respectfully acknowledge the contributions of veterans and remember the sacrifices of the troops and their families.

For more information, contact the Arizona Department of Veterans Services, (602) 255-3373.

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