State Capitol celebrates Veterans Day

The Veterans Day ceremony at the state capitol had a decidedly local flavor this year.

Gov. Jay Nixon was on the road in Chillcothe. So it fell to the Jefferson City Veterans Council and local officials to present the program in the rotunda.

Some things never change in Veterans Day ceremonies: The color guards, the prayers, the songs, and the rifle salutes.

About 100 people gathered in the capitol rotunda for a brief service. Jefferson City Administrator Steve Rasmussen, a retired army colonel, told the audience the country can rely upon young Americans to defend their liberty and their way of life. Rasmussen also made a pitch for veteran TMs benefits.

"I think Abraham Lincoln said it best in his second inaugural address when he said, 'We should strive to finish the work that we are now in, that we should bind up the nation's wounds, we should care for those who bore the battle...and for his widow...and for his orphan, U.S. Army Ret. Col. Steve Rasmussen said.

Mark Birmingham of Holts Summit spent twenty years in the air force.

"I encourage anybody and everybody that can to serve, USAF Ret. Mark Birmingham said. If you can't, fine. We appreciate the support that everybody gives the military.

Current soldiers say Veterans Day offers an important reminder.

I've actually lived in the third world and I've seen what it's like in other parts of the world, U.S. Army Active Troy Stabenow said. "And we take too much for granted.

The Jefferson City Veterans council is composed of more than a dozen VFW and American Legion organizations.

Post 1003 provided a luncheon for veterans and their families following the rotunda ceremony.