By Krista M. Madkins
Killeen Daily Herald

About 250 guests gathered at Harker Heights’ veterans ceremony Thursday to thank those who have served, those serving now and those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

The ceremony marked the sixth year of the collaboration between the city, the Harker Heights Veterans’ Council and Fort Hood leaders.

Veterans are “ordinary people who have made extraordinary sacrifices for their country and loved ones,” said Lt. Gen. Donald M. Campbell Jr., III Corps and Fort Hood commander.

Campbell spoke about how one soldier gave the ultimate sacrifice for his country and how another soldier viewed it.

The surviving soldier viewed it as a loss but then realized that her comrade’s sacrifice could be the turning point in history; his life might have helped save millions of lives.

Campbell’s remarks were followed by a wreath-laying. The wreath was carried by 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment Command Sgt. Maj. Jonathan J. Hunt and Sgt. 1st Class Charles Armstead of the Warrior Transition Brigade.

“It is a huge honor to be asked to carry the wreath,” said Armstead. “I was injured, but I can still give back.” He said that doing this was his way of giving back to other veterans.

As the ceremony neared its end, Andrew Phelps of the 1st Cavalry Band played taps in honor of fallen veterans.

Phelps said that playing the trumpet “is my way as a bandsmen to give back to those who have served and given their lives.”