A St. Peter veteran and volunteer for several veterans organizations will speak at the annual St. Peter High School/Middle School Veterans Day program.
The program, which is open to the public, will be at 9:25 a.m. Friday, Nov. 11, in the school gym. A brief reception for veterans precedes the ceremony. The school’s Social Studies Department organizes the program each year.
Dave Johnson will be the speaker. Johnson, a retired dean of students at South Central College, North Mankato, enlisted in the U.S. Army Reserves in 1968-76. Johnson, a St. Peter native, served with the 205th Infantry Battalion, Mankato. He said he had many friends in the unit.
“Certainly, you learn the importance of working together with each other in the military,” Johnson said. From the Universal Code of Military Justice, “you learn hierarchy, chain of command, and the importance of the oath that you take” to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”
“That becomes your philosophy once you enter the military,” Johnson said.
He is the current commander of the Last Man’s Club in St. Peter and is involved with William R. Witty American Legion Post 37, Disabled American Veterans and the St. Peter Area Veterans Memorial Association Board.
He says the sacrifice of 7 percent of Americans who qualify as veterans has made the U.S. the best place in the world to live.
“I’m very pleased with outcome and would like to see it continue,” Johnson said.
For the Veterans Day address, he is considering comments about the American flag and “what it stands for in the eyes of the veterans.”