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University of Central Missouri
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Contact: Jeff Murphy | Video
WARRENSBURG, MO (May 25, 2011) – A decorated U.S. Marine who served in Vietnam, Charles “Lynn” Lowder, today reminded those attending a Pre-Memorial Day Ceremony that the freedom our nation enjoys came with many “sacrifices of blood.” These sacrifices were made by more than 1.3 million service men and women who, since the Revolutionary War, gave their lives fighting for their country.
Lowder was the keynote speaker during a ceremony which took place in the University of Central Missouri Alumni Memorial Chapel. Other speakers included Charles Ambrose, university president; Brig. Gen. Scott Vander Hamm, commander, 509th Bomb Wing, Whiteman Air Force Base; Missouri State Senator David Pearce, 31st District; and Missouri State Representative Denny Hoskins, 121st District.
Lowder is a former trial attorney, law firm and corporate executive, who was a commissioned officer in the Marine Corps. His combat experience is profiled in two books, First Force Recon Company: Sunrise at Midnight by Bill Peters and Inside Force Recon: Recon Marines in Vietnam by Michael Lee Lanning and Ray W. Stubbe.
During his remarks, Lowder praised the efforts of U.S. military men and women who currently serve their country, and he gave homage to those who have lost their lives since the nation’s first military operations.
“America’s initial desire to be free had to be paid for in blood – paid for by patriots who were willing to stand up to the most powerful country in the world at that time and risk everything, including their lives,” Lowder said. “Since that time, Americans have lived in a world often at struggle and too often at war.
“History has taught us that in order for Americans to live in peace, they have to be prepared for conflicts and war. Every generation of Americans has had to be prepared and ready to answer the call of duty.”
He urged those present to not take for granted the freedom they enjoy as U.S. citizens and to be aware of the history and the men and women who made it possible.
“We need to remind ourselves and others how very fortunate we are to live in America, and that freedom, absolutely and positively is not a free gift,” he said. “Everything of real value in this life comes with a price and sacrifices that must be made.”
People around the nation will officially celebrate Memorial Day on Monday, May 30. The Pre-memorial Day Ceremony was sponsored by the UCM Offices of Military and Veteran Services, Community Engagement, and Enrollment Management. Members of UCM’s Department of Military Science also participated in the program.