Letters (Dec. 9, 2009)

Support for veterans is much appreciated

Upon reading ?Legion Riders turn out for Marine?s funeral? (Dec. 2), it made me reflect back to the funeral of my dad, Don Bezdek, a Vietnam veteran. I am proud to say our family got to experience the same support and honor of the Patriot Guard on March 16, 2007.

According to the Patriot Guard Web site, this was the first appearance made in Marion County for a funeral after the formation of the Kansas Riders in Mulvane in 2005.

Thanks to some research by a few friends at the American Legion Post 366, this idea was presented to my dad at the Robert Dole VA Hospital in Wichita for thought regarding his own funeral. That decision was later made for him?and what a memorable decision that has become.

While exiting Jost Funeral Home, what a glorious sight awaited us: American flags, veterans standing at attention out of respect for their ?brother? and a personal condolence for my mom from a rider, also a Vietnam veteran, representing the group.

I will never forget the smile on Jared Jost?s face that afternoon and his comment, ?Don would?ve been very proud!? One couldn?t help but feel the warmth and strength from this group of strangers, but in actuality, a reunion of a quiet, extended family.

It?s amazing to see how far our country has evolved from 40-plus years ago, when our veterans came home from duty and had no support from their community or nation. Today, it?s groups like the Patriot Guards (patriotguardks.org) that are paving the way for change, as we should, too.

Blessings to our military men and women?active or veteran. Thanks for all you have done for our nation.

Lisa Salsgiver

Wichita

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