Salute to Veterans Event
The City of La Mirada hosted its annual Salute to Veterans event on Monday, November 6 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts, 14900 La Mirada Boulevard. The public was invited to attend this patriotic event, which paid tribute to Veterans and those currently serving in our military.
This year, the City was honored to welcome La Mirada resident and retired Marine Sergeant Michael F. Van Houtte as its special guest. Sgt. Van Houtte proudly served in the Marine Corps from March 1966 until January 1971. During his service, Sgt. Van Houtte earned a Purple Heart, and was recently presented with the Bronze Star with the “V” device for his display of heroism in April 1967 in Vietnam. The City was proud to have retired Sgt. Van Houtte share his inspiring story during his time of service for his country.
Wounded Warrior Project’s National Speaker Jeremiah Pauley served as this year’s keynote speaker. Jeremiah is proud to have served his country for 11 years in the U.S. Army. His journey in the Airborne Infantry ultimately took him to Tal Afar, Iraq, where he was injured by a roadside bomb. Due to his wounds, Jeremiah was medically retired from the Army as a Staff Sergeant in 2007. His awards include the Purple Heart and Combat Infantry Badge.
The guest speaker of the evening was Lieutenant Colonel Jeffery Moore. Lieutenant Colonel Moore has 22 years of military service, is a combat veteran, and has deployed in Operation Iraqi Freedom III. He is currently a Battalion Commander with the California National Guard's 40th Infantry Division located at the Joint Forces Training Base at Los Alamitos. Lt. Col. Moore works full time for the California National Guard and is the Executive Officer for the Counterdrug Taskforce. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Physical Geography with a Master of Arts degree in Education.
The City also honored La Mirada veterans who have returned home. During the ceremony, Military street banners were retired and presented to veterans and their family members. Many veterans displayed memorabilia and spoke to guests about their years of service. A video presentation displaying photos submitted from local veterans was also shown.