On Wednesday Nov. 11 at 10:30 a.m. the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets will hold a Veterans Day remembrance ceremony in the War Memorial Chapel to recognize all veterans and to honor the service that Virginia Tech men and women have given our nation.

Maj. Gen. Jerry Allen, the Commandant of Cadets of the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets, will speak, the service songs will be played, and then all attendees will be asked to proceed up to the War Memorial for the placing of a memorial wreath.

At 11 a.m. Virginia Tech President Charles W. Steger will place the wreath in front of the cenotaph on Memorial Court. The Gregory Guard, the corps rifle drill team, will fire a rifle salute, and echo taps will be played. All veterans and friends of veterans are invited.

Eleven o’clock is a symbolic time on this special day. Veterans Day, formally called Armistice Day, was initially created to celebrate the signing of the Armistice at the end of World War I. The signing occurred at 11a.m. on the 11th day of the 11th month in the year 1918.

In addition, at 5 p.m., the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets will hold a formal retreat ceremony at the flag pole on Upper Quad. The regiment will be formed between Lane, Brodie, and Rasche Halls. The color guard will lower the flag, Skipper, the corps cannon, will fire; the Highty-Tighties, the regimental band, will play; and the Gregory Guard will perform a rifle salute.

The corps will also be holding two vigil ceremonies to honor our nation’s veterans. Arnold Air Society, in coordination with the cadet regiment, will be holding a 24-hour vigil at The Rock on Upper Quad from midnight Tuesday to midnight Wednesday. Two cadets will be posted as guards and will change every hour. The final two cadets standing vigil will be the two most senior ranking cadets, the regimental commander, Cadet Col. John Steger of Springfield, Va., a senior majoring in history in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences and the regimental executive officer, Cadet Lt. Col. Gregory Carroll of Remington, Va., a senior majoring in management in the Pamplin College of Business. Both are Emerging Leader Scholarship recipients.

The second vigil will be located at the War Memorial Pylons. Echo Company will hold a 48-hour vigil from midnight Monday to midnight Wednesday. Two cadets will be posted as guards at the cenotaph and will change every hour. All current and many former members of Echo will participate in the vigil.

All are welcome to come and view these ceremonies.

Also on Veterans Day morning, the Highty-Tighties will represent the corps as they march in the Christiansburg Veterans Day Parade and the color guard will teach a flag etiquette class at Gilbert Linkous Elementary School. On the Sunday prior to Veterans Day, the color guard will present the colors at three separate community ceremonies.

The Rock is a memorial to Virginia Tech alumni lost in World War I and is located next to the flag pole on Upper Quad. Cadets salute this memorial whenever they pass it to honor the sacrifice of these men. All Hokies are encouraged to place their hand over their heart when passing it, as cadets do when out of uniform. The Pylons are a representation of Virginia Tech’s values. The values engraved on the eight pylons are, (from left to right): Brotherhood, Honor, Leadership, Sacrifice, Service, Loyalty, Duty, and Ut Prosim (That I May Serve). The Pylons are etched with the names of 424 Virginia Tech students and graduates who have died defending our nation’s freedom. At the memorial’s center, the cenotaph displays the names of Virginia Tech’s seven Congressional Medal of Honor recipients.

With a visitor’s pass, free parking is available on the Drillfield, along the Alumni Mall, and in the Shultz Lot (please request the pass code from the Visitor Information Center for this lot). A visitor’s pass may be obtained Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Visitor Information Center, located on Southgate Drive. Find more parking information online or call (540) 231-3200.

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