Campus will honor student veterans with library exhibition

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Campus will honor student veterans with library exhibition

For Fresno State students Nick Carbajal and Francisco Rosas — veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces — a new exhibit that opened Tuesday (Nov. 1) in the Henry Madden Library has special meaning.

Memorabilia from their time serving the nation is on display in the free, public exhibition, “Honoring Our Veterans: We are the Home of the Free Because of the Brave,” that runs Nov. 1 through 30 in the Diversity Lounge on the library’s second floor as part of Fresno State’s Veterans Week now underway. They also will join other veterans and service personnel in a special “walk of honor” on campus Nov. 10 to help commemorate the exhibition with an opening reception at 1 p.m.

The observance began Friday with Salute to Services night at the Bulldogs’ football game against the Air Force Academy. Campus activities culminate at 10 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 10, with a memorial service at the Veterans Monument near the Thomas Building flagpoles on campus.

The campus is closed Nov. 11, the national holiday honoring veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces when the University’s Army and Air Force ROTC units will be participating in the Fresno Veterans Day Parade led by the Bulldog Marching Band in downtown Fresno that day. The parade begins at 11 a.m. in front of Fresno City Hall on Tulare and P Street, and ends at Chukchansi Park (1800 Tulare St.).

Another campus event for Veterans Week coordinated through the Fresno State Veterans Council includes the second annual Veterans Day 5K Run on Saturday, Nov. 5. See 5K press release.

Following the Nov. 10 memorial service, the Armed Forces Walk of Honor will begin at the Rose Garden west of the Veterans Monument and proceed to the Madden Library for the veteran’s exhibit, which was developed by the library’s Diversity Committee and TRIO Student Support Services Veterans Program.

The interactive exhibit honors Fresno State’s current and prior veterans by showcasing memorabilia such as awards, uniform pieces, books, patches, medals and a footlocker below an American flag hung on the wall next to the display case.

A monitor broadcasts videos about the various military organizations and photographs and bios of present student, staff, faculty and alumni who are veterans.

Also featured will be the Missing Man Table, also known as the Fallen Comrade Table, which is a place of honor set up in military dining facilities of the U.S. Armed Forces and during occasions such as service branch birthday balls, in memory of fallen, missing or imprisoned military service-members.

“The exhibit items are on loan from Fresno State students, staff and faculty members,” said Eluterio Escamilla, director of the TRIO Veterans Program who worked on the exhibit with University employees Russell Gross, Victor Olivares and Olivia Estrada. “They are veterans who wanted to share with the community a snapshot of their experience on active duty.”

One of the bios on display belongs to Carbajal, an Army veteran who is studying sociology at Fresno State. Carbajal was drafted in 1972 and was deployed to South Korea. He is continuing his education with support from Fresno State’s Student Support Services Veterans program.

Also on display is a shadow box with awards including a Purple Heart medal and challenge coins earned by Rosas, who served in the Army for three years and is a graduate student in the higher education administration and leadership master’s option.

“I wanted to share with the Fresno State community that I am part of a unique group of students who served their country and now attend Fresno State,” Rojas said. “To give them a glimpse of my experience and outcome of being part of a combat zone which influenced me as a student, a husband and a dad. Veterans come with their own set of challenges that help Fresno State become a more inclusive community.”

INFO: Cindy Wathen at ciwathen@csufresno.edu.or Escamilla at 559.278.5727.

Related Links:

“Honoring Our Veterans”
Veterans Week 2016
Veterans 5K Run