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What Would You Say to a Returning Iraq War Vet?

If you could speak to one of those vets face-to-face, what would you say? What kind of welcome would you give, as St. Louis prepares for Saturday's first-of-its-kind welcome home parade?

The date and time are set: Noon on Saturday at Kiener Plaza. That's when a grassroots effort to create the first-of-its-kind welcome home parade for Iraq war veterans becomes a reality.

Will you go to the parade? If you could personally greet one of the returning war veterans, what would you say? We'd love to have your comments below. We'll compile and forward them to the parade organizers.

The parade is scheduled to travel west on Market Street to Union Station where organizers will provide a resource bank for veterans between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. There, returning sailors, soldiers, marines and airmen can find services from the Red Cross or Department of Veterans Affairs and enjoy entertainment from 3 to 8:30 p.m.

Organizer Craig Schneider, of St. Charles, told KMOX-AM that the parade is not just a way to welcome veterans back home and to say thank you. It's to help them adjust and to allow them to put their military skills back to work in the community.

The parade started with a grassroots campaign to raise money, along with support from readers of a Facebook page dedicated to the effort. That page now has more than 4,500 members. According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the parade organizers have received $10,000 from Anheuser-Busch and $7,500 from Mayflower to help defray expenses.

Will you attend the parade? And what would you say if you could address a single war vet, face to face?

Terri Violet January 25, 2012 at 07:05 PM
“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13. Thank you for offering your lives for our freedom and welcome home with open arms! St. Peters Veterans Memorial Commission Chaplain Terri Violet
Ericka Van Koughnet Oxford January 25, 2012 at 09:41 PM
Thank you for your service and sacrifices to our great country!
Mayor Len Pagano January 25, 2012 at 11:36 PM
As Mayor of the city of St Peters, and the Veterans Memorial Commission will stand United with open arms, with these words.....WELCOME HOME, THANK YOU, we are all so PROUD for you and we also thank your family for being in support for all you do for our country. .

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