U honors 11 vets with week of eventsGuests of honor include Brig. Gen. Doug Cherry and Sen. Mitt Romney

The University of Utah will honor 11 Utah veterans at its 22nd annual Veterans Day Commemoration Ceremony, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019, in the A. Ray Olpin Union Building ballroom. The annual tribute kicks off a series of events planned throughout the week, including a dodgeball tournament, a panel discussion on military dogs, a performance at Kingsbury Hall and a football game with military highlights.

The annual Utah National Guard Veterans Day concert begins tonight, Nov. 8, at 7 p.m. in the Tabernacle on Temple Square. Featured performers include the 23rd Army Band and Granite School District High School choirs performing an array of patriotic songs.

The annual commemoration ceremony will be held on Monday, Nov. 11, at 11 a.m. It will be preceded by a bagpipe procession from the Marriott Library to the Union at 10:30 a.m. Nominations came from across the state, and the 11 veterans chosen to be honored will receive a commemorative medallion onstage at the ceremony.

Doctor of Pharmacy student Alan Abbinanti will be awarded the 2019 Student Veteran of the Year Award. For his meritorious service to Utah veterans, Geoff Panos will receive the Rick Randle Award. Brig. Gen. Doug Cherry, deputy commander, 76th Operational Response Command will provide the keynote address. Special guest of honor, Utah Sen. Mitt Romney, will provide additional remarks and assist in presenting the medallions to the 11 honorees with Gen. Cherry.

A panel discussion, “Military Working Dogs: Man’s Best Friend,” will be held at noon on Wednesday, Nov. 13, in the Hinckley Institute Caucus Room located in the Gardner Commons building just south of the Union building, 260 Central Campus Drive. Panelists include the Kennel Master for Hill Air Force Base, owners of retired working dogs, and Utah’s 2nd Congressional District Director Gary Webster.

The week concludes with a football game between Utah and UCLA at Rice-Eccles Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 16, at 6 p.m. Veterans and the Armed Forces will be highlighted in a special halftime show.

During the game’s special halftime show, veterans from all branches of the armed forces will be highlighted.

The commemoration ceremony and the panel discussion are free and open to the public, but the other events require tickets

For a complete list of honors and events, visit veteransday.utah.edu.

The following veterans will be honored: 

  • Ralph C. Borja, ranger, U.S. Army, Grenada/Panama/Afghanistan
  • Joseph R. Bouley, pilot, U.S. Air Force, Operation Desert Shield/Storm
  • Thomas Goff, pilot, U.S. Army, Vietnam/Afghanistan
  • Terry R. Hoecherl, combat medic, U.S. Army, Vietnam
  • Leland F. Hortman, infantryman, U.S. Army/Louisiana Army National Guard, World War II
  • Earl M. Jacklin, radar technician, U.S. Army/Utah Army National Guard, World War II/Korean War
  • Glenn W. Johnson, special forces, U.S. Army, Afghanistan/Africa/Iraq
  • Stanley B. Nance, radio operator (Ghost Army), U.S. Army, World War II
  • Jack W. Peck, pilot, U.S. Army, Vietnam
  • Donald W. Pullan, engineer, U.S. Army, World War II
  • Richard C. Stiefken, pararescueman, U.S. Air Force, Vietnam

Media Contacts

Paul Morgandirector, University of Utah Veterans Support Center
Office: 801-587-7722

Shawn WoodCommunications Specialist, University Marketing & Communications
Office: 801-585-9244