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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Military personnel honored at New Vision Youth program


"One of the things that makes an American soldier so good at their job is that they believe in America.’

— Capt. Domingo Hale


KINGSPORT — Active and retired military servicemen and servicewomen were honored Sunday afternoon in a program sponsored by the New Vision Youth and the Kingsport Parks and Recreation Community Service division at the V.O. Dobbins Sr. Complex gymnasium.

Click here to see pictures from the "Salute to Soldiers" ceremony.

The military personnel were nominated from the community and Sunday’s program was part of New Vision Youth’s eighth annual Black History Program.

Several veterans were in attendance to accept their awards, and those who couldn’t make it had family in attendance to accept the award for them.

Johnnie Mae Swagerty was misstress of ceremonies and Army Capt. Domingo Hale served as honorary award presenter.

“We live in a very conflicted world and there are billions of people who are in poverty, and war is a reality to everyone,” Hale said. “However there is still  hope for freedom and a decent quality of life for all people. The American soldiers are the people responsible for protecting or promoting these hopes and these ideas.

“While they do not make the executive military decisions, it is their loyalty and dedication toward spreading and protecting democracy and freedom that gives them the ability to do a very good job and a job well done. One of the things that makes an American soldier so good at their job is that they believe in America.”

Among the personnel honored were Sgt. Allen Faulkerson (Army); Wallace R. Ross Jr. (Army); Sgt. Robert Bogus III (Army); Master Sgt. Sinora Lewis (Army); Sgt. William F. Johnson (Army); Frank Shepherd (Army); Sgt. Michael Leeper (Army); Sgt. Phillip Hoard (Army); Sgt. RonRico Hayes (Army); Sgt. Major Cynthia Howard (Army); Sgt. Michael Moore (Army); William V. Hickman (Army); Sgt. Barbara Lynn Bell (Army); Mark Johnston (Navy); Van Dobbins Jr. (Navy); Richard Hicks (Army); Sgt. Phillip Price (Army); Rev. Lawrence T. Myrick II (Army); Sgt. John Brice (Army Green Beret); Sgt. B.C. Camp (Marines); Dujwan Goodwin (Navy); Lt. Col. Laura Faulkerson (Army); Sgt. Orval Bond (Army); Sgt. James Brice (Army); James Brice Jr. (Navy); Sgt. Marshall R. Cartwright (Marines); Sgt. Stanford L. Treece (Air Force); the Rev. Arthur Snapp (Army); and Hale.

Three recently deceased servicemen were also honored, including Sgt. James W. Swafford (Army); Sgt. B.H. “Benny” Swan (Army); and James Snapp Jr. (Navy).

The event included a prayer by Myrick, followed by a scripture reading by New Vision Youth member Diamond Wyckoff. Color guard was provided by the Sullivan North ROTC and the national anthem sung by New Vision Youth member Juliano Soto.

Kingsport VFW Post 979 participated in the award presentations, and the Full Gospel Mission choir concluded the event with a rendition of “I’m a Soldier in the Army of the Lord.”