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By Joe Starkey



This was the 100th Anniversary of the NAACP. The good part is that they sold out the 11 tables set up. The poor part was that too many people made the decision to enjoy the freedoms earned by the people that went before them in this group and ignore the present needs. MC Karen Adams opened the dinner with the statement that “We need to get the message out – go knock on doors and invite people to join and help.” Those growing up today need to understand that people that went before them and how they worked hard so those today could enjoy the freedoms they have and those they will earn tomorrow.{{more}} Mr. Jeremy Jay provided special music during the meal and background music for the entire night. He is a delight to the ear.John C. Williams gave the Pledge of Allegiance and Lieutenant Colonel Tony R. Marlowe of Dyess Air Force Base was introduced as the main speaker. He opened by stating that “Freedom has always had a very high price but Americans have always been willing to pay that price.” He spoke of the fact that over 1,000 civilian contractors have died in Iraq . “We could not take Iraq to freedom without them.”He then told a story of Iron Mike. He was an Explosive Ordnance Technician who took the longest walk up to clear a booby trap. It turned out to be set specifically to catch an EOD Tech. He called for his troops to stay back and not come for him. At that time, it was command detonated by the terrorist. By the miracle that happens sometimes when you are really, really close – he was blown clear and had no major injuries. I would be edited by Mrs. Miller if I told you the type of salute he gave the terrorist as he walked away.LTC Marlowe saluted those who stay home as he said “those who fight and train are supported well by those who wait and keep the home running. He concluded by saying “We keep on walking in the right path and we will prevail.”Mr. Petty Hunter, President of the NAACP talked of the founding in February 1909 of the Rainbow Coalition to gain rights for all men, women and children. How this evolved into the NAACP and those present remembered the start of the Abilene Chapter in 1958. “We stand on their shoulders to continue the battle.”

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The West Texas Tribune is a community-based newspaper that has been published, uninterrupted, since May 2005. Our goal is to highlight events and people throughout West Texas as an independent, locally run newspaper. We thrive on the support of our local community.

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