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Natchez, Adams County celebrate Veterans Day

NATCHEZ — Wednesday, Nov. 11, is a day that many will show appreciation to all veterans — servicemen and women from every branch of the military.

Due to COVID-19, Veterans Day is being celebrated differently than it has in prior years in the Miss-Lou.

John Floyd, commander of Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 9573, which located on Seargent Prentiss Drive in Natchez, said U.S. flags are being set up near public highways as a means of showing gratitude and remembering servicemen and women.

“It is always important that we remember our veterans,” he said.

With this being an election year, Floyd said it is especially important for people to remember the veterans who fought for the freedoms in the nation, allowing them to choose their leaders by exercising their right to vote.

“We didn’t fight for this country to give it up,” said Floyd, who served in the Mississippi National Guard for more than 20 years.

Carolyn Myers with Seeds of Change Resource Foundation is hosting a drive-thru veterans appreciation lunch from noon until 2 p.m. Wednesday at the VFW building on Seargent Prentiss Drive with help from other volunteers at Seeds of Change and the VFW, she said.

“We are doing to-go lunch because of COVID-19,” she said. “It is for all veterans in the Miss-Lou area for all branches of service.”

Myers asked for those who attend to please wear a mask for the health and safety of all participants and volunteers.

“This is part of what Seeds of Change foundation does every year for our veterans as our way of showing appreciation to them for their service to our country,” Myers said. “Last year we had a brunch and we had over 50 people participate.”

Due to COVID-19 health and safety concerns, Home with Heroes’ clothing bank and museum are closed, Home With Heroes founder and president, Mark LaFrancis said, adding patrons may still assist veterans and their families by sponsoring the Wreaths Across America program.

LaFrancis, who served in the U.S. Air Force for 23 years, said Wreaths Across America is a nationwide effort to place holiday wreaths on the graves at national cemeteries, including those at the Natchez National Cemetery and Greenlawn Memorial Park.

Wreath sponsorships are $15 each through the Home with Heroes Foundation, LaFrancis said, adding 30% of all wreath sponsorships this year will be used to assist Miss-Lou veterans and their loved ones.

“This is a great way not only to honor our deceased veterans, but help local veterans in need,” LaFrancis said. “We are developing protocols to respond to COVID-19, and will let the region know closer to the date of ceremonies and wreath-placing.”

LaFrancis said wreath placement ceremonies are scheduled to take place on Dec. 19.

An individual can sponsor a specific grave or graves or Home With Heroes will designate a veteran whose grave will have a wreath placed with a non-specified sponsorship, LaFrancis said.

The cutoff date for wreath orders is Nov. 28. Order forms can be downloaded from the Home With Heroes web site www.homewithheroes.org; on the Home with Heroes Facebook page or requested by email to homewithheroes@live.com.

Forms are also available at Natchez City Hall and the Adams County Circuit Clerk’s Office.

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