Student veterans to speak at Memorial Day ceremony May 30

Centralia College will host its annual Memorial Day observance at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, May 30, in front of the Hanson Building. The community is invited to attend.

The featured speakers this year are two Centralia College student veterans, Carlos Santini and Sherri Mellott.

Carlos Santini served eight years in the US Army, including four years with 671st Engineering Company out of Portland as a 12C Bridge Crew Member and demolition specialist. He was deployed to Kuwait in 2003 under Operation Enduring Freedom. In 2003, his orders changed to Operation Iraqi Freedom. He was in Iraq for one year repairing and building bridges, guarding enemy prisoners, conducting check points, gate guard, convoy security missions, river patrols, roadside bomb-clearing, and clearing homes of insurgents or enemy combatants.

After returning, he served three years with 141 HHC Oregon National Guard as a material contracting specialist. In August 2005, he was deployed to New Orleans in support of operations for Hurricane Katrina; he helped search buildings for survivors and others. He served 2008-09 with the Idaho National Guard HHC 145th.

Sherri Mellott served as a private first class in the 66th Aviation Brigade out of Fort Lewis. She worked as a 92A Parts Clerk in the motor pool. She joined in 2003 and, upon arriving home from basic and subsequent training, she was handed orders for Iraq. There, she served in the combat unit in the 81st Brigade.

Also speaking at the event will be Heidi Palmer, an Army veteran and Centralia College’s Vet Corps Navigator, and Dr. Bob Mohrbacher, Centralia College president. The Lewis County Marine Corps League Detachment 119 will post and retire the colors.

Refreshments will be available after the ceremony in the Veterans Center in Kemp Hall room 103.

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