District 6 Recreation Memorial Day celebration includes a walk/run and special presentations
Roberto A. Jackson
Gila River Indian News
District 6 Recreation did their part in remembering those who lost their lives while serving in the military with a Memorial Day Walk/Run on June 1. The event was postponed from the previously scheduled date, but Community members including veterans and families were still eager to participate in the healthy activity, which started at the Komatke Market and ended at the District 6 Learning Center.
With addresses by Miss Gila River Tyler Owens, Jr. Miss Susanna Osife, and Gov. Stephen Roe Lewis, the twenty-plus participants also listened to District 3 veteran Gary Anderson give a two-part presentation on the Gila River Indian Community’s military history and the Community members killed in action since WWI.
Anderson has been researching GRIC veterans and showing his presentation in the Community. The June 1 walk/run was ideal for Anderson to show his research.
“[District 6] Recreation had seen it and asked me to speak at their Memorial Day,” said Anderson.
With 22-years of service in the U.S. Army, Anderson’s talk included slides of GRIC fallen soldiers with their date of death, circumstances and any awards.
“I’m glad he’s bringing it forward,” said Albert Perez, U.S. Army veteran, who participated in the run.
Gov. Lewis also commented on the importance of Anderson’s research.
“Our young children should know this,” said Gov. Lewis.
Gov. Lewis said the information displayed the Community’s bravery and valor.
“I’m glad everybody came together to have this opportunity to honor our veterans and our fallen warriors,” said Gov. Lewis.
Miss Gila River Tyler Owens’ cousin, the late Army Cpl. Billy Farris, was among the fallen soldiers included in Anderson’s presentation. She had a special message for the families of those currently serving in the military.
“I think it’s important that we continue to remember those families that made that sacrifice as well and we pray for those who are currently in service that their families never have to face losing a loved one,” said Owens.