Las Vegas, N.M. – Highlands University will honor local veterans at a Nov. 11 Veterans Day ceremony at 2 p.m. at the university’s Centennial Park.
The Highlands Alumni Office is sponsoring the event. Centennial Park is at the southwest corner of National Avenue and 8th Street. Light refreshments will be served.
“Highlands recognizes that we owe a debt of gratitude to all of our U.S. veterans, and we especially want to honor our students and alumni who are veterans,” said Juli Salman, alumni coordinator. “Students at Highlands have a long history of military service to our country.”
The local Vietnam Veterans of America #1063 Honor Guard will post the colors at the Veterans Day ceremony and the Fort Union Living History group will present the arms. The local New Mexico Army National Guard 720th Unit will also participate in the ceremony.
Highlands University vocal performance music major student Daniel Torres will sing the national anthem.
The speaker at the Veterans Day ceremony is veteran Christopher Potter, a Highlands University criminal justice sophomore. Potter started a new position based at Highlands as the veterans upward bound coordinator for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs in the northeastern region of New Mexico.
Potter, 32, served three active tours of duty with the U.S. Navy between 2009 and 2013 during Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Operation New Dawn. He was an aviation boatswain’s mate aboard the USS Ronald Reagan and the USS Abraham Lincoln. Potter launched, recovered and stowed aircraft aboard the ships.
Potter was honorably discharged in 2013.
“My military service is a reflection of how much I love my country and my state,” said Potter, a native New Mexican and Las Vegas resident. “I feel like veterans are a select breed of people who have a sense of purpose that extends beyond themselves. I appreciate how Highlands is honoring veterans for our service.”
Potter said he will help veterans who are recently discharged with the tools they need to get into school.
“I will provide information about grants available for veterans, including ones for education, as well as information about accessing resources veterans need, like disability services and job placement services,” Potter said.
In the event of inclement weather, the Veterans Day ceremony will be in the university’s Student Union Building, 800 National Ave., directly across from Centennial Park.