Territory joins the nation to pay tribute to our veterans


American Samoa tomorrow joins the rest of the United States in celebrating Veterans Day, with a local ceremony at the Veterans Memorial Stadium, where Gov. Togiola Tulafono will deliver his annual address for the national holiday that honors those who have served in all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces.

“Today, our Nation comes together to honor our veterans and commemorate the legacy of profound service and sacrifice they have upheld in pursuit of a more perfect Union,” said President Barack Obama in his Veterans Day proclamation issued Nov. 3.

“Through their steadfast defense of America’s ideals, our service members have ensured our country still stands strong, our founding principles still shine, and nations around the world know the blessings of freedom,” he said. “As we offer our sincere appreciation and respect to our veterans, to their families, to those who are still in harm’s way, and to those we have laid to rest, let us rededicate ourselves to serving them as well as they have served the United States of America.”

“On Veterans Day, we pay tribute to our veterans, to the fallen, and to their families,” said Obama, who called upon federal, state, and local officials to display the flag of the United States and to participate in patriotic activities in their communities,” the president said.

The local Veterans Affairs Office, which is under the jurisdiction of the Governor’s Office has issued a public invitation to all veterans to attend tomorrow’s local ceremony, which includes a parade at the stadium.

Participants in the parade and the ceremony include the local Army Reserve Unit and JROTC groups from high schools. The official program is expected to get underway around 9 a.m. after the governor and his wife arrive.

Master of Ceremony, Paopaoailua J. Fiaui will deliver the opening remarks while Rev. Vili Mauigoa will provide the invocation and benediction, and the choirs from Fagaitua and Leone High Schools will provide hymns as well as sing the United States and American Samoa national anthems.

Besides ASG and federal offices, including the US Post Office, other local businesses will be closed tomorrow, such as ANZ Amerika Samoa Bank and Bank of Hawai'i.

Many members of the private sector — such as StarKist Samoa — will remain open. The United States and American Samoa flags are expected to be seen island wide tomorrow.

In a separate event, organizers have invited all veterans and soldiers who have served and are currently serving in the U.S. Army Reserve to join in a special get together tomorrow at the Army Reserve Center in Tafuna from 1 p.m.-3 p.m.

Best wishes to our veterans on Veterans Day. Let us also remember our Toa o Samoa, as well as other peace keepers, serving all over the world, especially those still deployed in war torn countries.

Samoa News will publish tomorrow as well as the weekend edition of To’asavili. However on Veterans Day, tomorrow, our office will only be open half day, and of course will be closed Saturday. Have a save 3-day weekend, drink responsibly.


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