21-gun salute planned for Veterans Day ceremony

University Park, Pa. -- A Veterans Day ceremony featuring a World War II veteran and the executive officer in Pennsylvania’s Office of Veterans Affairs will take place from noon-1 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 11, on Old Main Lawn at Penn State's University Park campus. The Penn State community is advised that as in previous years, a 21-gun salute is scheduled for the final portion of the ceremony from 12:45-1 p.m.

The Penn State University Veterans Organization (PSUVO) is sponsoring the event, which includes at least three speakers.

John Magill Jr. served three years in the U.S. Army as a paratrooper in the 17th Airborne Division during World War II. His unit received the Presidential Unit Citation for its jump into Germany behind enemy lines. Magill was awarded the Purple Heart with two clusters, three bronze battle stars, and a Bronze Star for his actions in Operation Varsity, and in 2002, Magill was inducted into the Legion of Honor-The Chapel of Four Chaplains. He is a Penn State alumnus.

Joining him is Lt. Col. Douglas A. Etter, the executive officer in Pennsylvania's Office of Veterans Affairs. Etter functions as the chief of staff for the deputy adjutant general-Veterans Affairs, Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. He is responsible for the oversight of Pennsylvania's six veterans homes and all of the state's veterans programs. Etter is a combat veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom for which he was awarded the Combat Action Badge and Bronze Star Medal.

The event also will include a bagpiper, bugler, the ROTC color guard, as well the Veterans of Foreign Wars rifle team performing a 21-gun salute to remember fallen veterans. The ceremony will recognize not only veterans at Penn State, but also those throughout Pennsylvania and around America.

PSUVO is a student organization whose membership includes student veterans, veteran alumni of Penn State, and additional social members concerned with veterans issues. The organization assures veterans that they always have a voice in student government, the university community and even the state of Pennsylvania. They also offer a social experience for veterans who are looking to meet people with similar life-experience.

For more information about the Veterans Day ceremony, visit http://www.clubs.psu.edu/up/psuvo and contact Todd Beaver at (619) 459-2523.

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Last Updated April 22, 2009