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Veterans across Central Georgia honored for their service

Thursday, community leaders, military families, and more gathered to honor veterans all over Central Georgia in many 11/11 services.

MACON, Ga. —

Warner Robins thanks those who served on Veterans Day

While many in Warner Robins say "Every Day is Armed Forces Appreciation Day," Thursday morning, city and state leaders, military families, and more gathered to honor veterans in the International City. 

The American Legion Post 172 rode their motorcycles to City Hall where the program happened. 

Legion members lined up in the back, holding up the Stars and Stripes throughout the ceremony. 

Some of the speakers who gave thanks included Warner Robins Mayor Randy Toms and 78th Air Base Wing Commander at Robins Air Force Base Lindsay Droz. 

Rick Delaney served in the Air Force for 24 years. He says it's a very small club of those who have served and it's nice to be able to give thanks.

"This town is a veteran town -- there's so many military here, retired military," Delaney said. "It's just a matter of giving back to those who gave so much. I wear a bracelet that says, 'Freedom isn't free, thank a veteran,' and that's the whole crux of it."

Macon-Bibb County salutes servicemen and women in Veterans Day program

For the sixth consecutive year, Middle Georgia State University and Macon-Bibb County hosted a Veterans Day ceremony at Coleman Hill in downtown Macon Thursday.

At the event, they also took the time to remember the sacrifices of those made by the 151st Machine Gun Battalion, 42nd Rainbow Division, and members of which lost their lives during World War I.

During the ceremony at the memorial to the group, attendees placed a wreath in honor of all veterans.

Vietnam veteran Larry Sams says ceremonies like this are important for service people who didn't always get respect in the past.

"When we left Vietnam, we were looked on as second-class citizens. People didn't like us. They called us 'baby killers,' and we struggled a lot. A lot of my friends, when we got back, they really struggled," Sams said.

At the conclusion, veterans received special commemorative challenge coins from Middle Georgia State President Christopher Blake.

Macon community honors veterans at Linwood Cemetery

About 100 people gathered at Macon's historic Linwood Cemetery to honor the sacrifices made by veterans in Central Georgia. 

The Macon Cemetery Preservation Corporation hosted its annual Veterans Day Program at the Pleasant Hill burial site.

US Senator Raphael Warnock joined veterans, community leaders, and organizations at the cemetery where prominent African Americans are buried.

Warnock told the group that he will work to continue to create a better quality of life for all veterans.

He specifically pointed out that he will continue to work to pass legislation to ensure that Black World War II veterans get access to the benefits that they earned.   

The sounds of "Taps" was heard across the cemetery as the ceremonial wreath was placed.   

Local veterans say the people buried here include veterans from conflicts as far back as the Civil War.

"We have soldiers buried here that have been involved in the wars, a Medal of Honor winner, the first soldier killed at Pearl Harbor buried here, and a lot of other veterans," said Central Georgia veteran Donald Lee Druitt Sr. 

Druitt also said veterans really appreciate how the public has turnout supporting veterans.

US Army veteran Albert James says, "A lot of people have died for this country and to be received like we are being received today is a blessing."

Retired Army Captain, Quintisia Kelly was the keynote speaker for the program. Kelly talked about the value of serving the community, and urged people to take time to find their best path to service.

City of Dublin celebrates vets with virtual Veterans Day program

In Dublin, the Carl Vinson VA Medical Center held a virtual Veterans Day Program.

US Army veteran and interim Medical Center Director Robert Reeder said, "Veterans Day is a special time where we honor those who served our country and sacrificed of themselves so that we can enjoy the freedoms we enjoy today."

If you would like to watch the program, you can head over to the Dublin VA Medical Center Facebook page.