Since the 1810 founding of Clinton County, the men and women who live here have proven their patriotism time and time again. Whenever our country called, they answered.
Mostly farmers and storekeepers in the early days, they left the comfort of home, raised their right hand, took an oath, put on the uniform of our country, and served with honor during the nation’s times of need. Many made the ultimate sacrifice for the cause of liberty.
From World War II through the Vietnam War, 100 Clinton County residents have been listed as “Killed In Action” or have died during their time in service. Through the outpouring of support and the generosity of the residents and businesses in Clinton County, it is now possible for some of those who returned to personally pay homage to their comrades who purchased, with their lives, the freedoms we enjoy. They will visit the memorials that honor the service and sacrifice of the county’s 81 WW II veterans, seven Korean War veterans and 12 Vietnam War veterans who left home, never to return.
As of Sept. 12, there are 85 local veterans going to Washington D.C. on the October Clinton County Honor Flight. And thanks to your benevolence, another Clinton County Honor Flight is planned for the spring for all the other veterans who have applied and those who wish to apply between now and then.
The Clinton County Honor Flight Committee has been busy planning a “Veteran Appreciation Day” at 2 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 25 with a free public showing of the Academy Award-nominated documentary “Honor Flight”, sponsored by the Murphy Theatre.
Then on Friday, Sept. 30 before the veterans and guardians board their American Legion-sponsored chartered buses for their all-expenses-paid night’s stay at a hotel in Dayton, the committee is planning a big Clinton County send-off and is asking the entire community for one more show of support.
Walnut Street in Wilmington will be closed to traffic between Sugartree and Main streets beginning at 4 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 30. There will be a musical prelude beginning at 5 p.m. with a jam-packed program beginning at 5:45 p.m. until 7 p.m.
The committee has once again set an aggressive goal and challenge the county’s residents to help us meet it — the committee would like to see 1,000 of the county’s 42,000 residents come out and join the celebration, and they hope to see Walnut Street, adjacent to the Clinton County Veterans Memorial, filled to overflowing with well-wishers for the veterans making the trip to Washington D.C.
Please show your patriotism and support for these Washington D.C. bound men and women, and the 3,400 other veterans residing in Clinton County, by spending a portion of your evening celebrating their service and expressing your gratitude for the sacrifices made by our veterans, for all of us.