On the eve of Veterans Day weekend, Gov. Bill Ritter today issued the
following statement in support of Colorado’s military veterans, active-
duty personnel, Colorado National Guard members, and military families:
“As the son of a veteran, and on behalf of the people of Colorado, I
want to extend my personal gratitude to Colorado’s military veterans
and their families. Their commitment to public service and the
sacrifices they have made for their country, this state and their
communities deserve the highest recognition we can give them. We also
must acknowledge our active-duty military personnel and Colorado
National Guard members who are serving in Iraq, Afghanistan and
Gov. Ritter also offered his appreciation to state officials for their
military service, including Senators Brandon Schaffer, Jack Taylor,
Steve Ward and Mike Kopp and Representative Joe Rice, and Secretary of
State Mike Coffman.
Gov. Ritter’s father served in the Army during World War II. He died
in 2005 and is buried at Ft.Logan National Cemetery. Gov. Ritter’s
father-in-law, Marwood Lewis, was a Navy captain.
Colorado is home to approximately 450,000 military veterans.
More than 300 Colorado National Guard members are currently deployed
in Iraq or Afghanistan, with more than 200 scheduled for deployment
over the next month. Over the past five years, 2,000 Colorado National
Guard members have been deployed, with two fatalities.
Gov. Ritter’s FY08-09 budget proposal includes funding for several
veteran-related programs, including $2.3 million to restore the
Colorado State Veterans Trust Fund to pre-recession levels.
The Governor issued a proclamation earlier this week saluting
Colorado’s veterans. On Saturday, he will participate in the annual
Veterans Day Parade and tribute in Denver.