Amos: ID vets, make them feel like royalty

Published 12:01 am Tuesday, November 11, 2014

1111 Maj. Amos AMS Vet Program

Identify a veteran, make him/her feel like royalty and show appreciation for the service he/she provided to this country.

That is what Maj. Chris Amos charged students and community members with during the 28th annual Veterans Day Program at the Andalusia Middle School.

“This week — this Veterans Day — I ask everyone to identify your veteran and make them feel like royalty,” Amos said. “Get out and find your veteran.

“They are at nursing homes, the VFW, churches, stores; your next door neighbor, your mother, father, brother, sister, the quiet man on the porch, the loud man at the ball game or even a teacher,” he said. “These are the veterans that have never been thanked for their service. Let’s use this day to change that.”

Amos has served more than 26 years in the Army National Guard,

He currently serves as the battalion executive officer of the 1103rd Combat Sustainment Support Battalion out of Eufaula. The 1103rd returned in July from Afghanistan, where they served as a logistical task force commanding CENTCOM Material Recovery Element (CMRE) mission as part of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Amos’ unit commanded more than 850 personnel while stationed at Bagram and Kandahar Airfields.

He was also deployed twice during Operation Desert Shield/Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

He received more than 20 awards and medals for his service.

Amos described his definition of a veteran is“someone who at one point in my life has written a blank check payable to my country, for an amount up to and including my life.”

He said that was honor, courage and duty, and if students wanted to show their sense of honor they could start by simply showing school spirit, and documenting and appreciating the story of anyone who has provided a service to their community or country.

“You can make a difference,” he said. “The first place you should start is by learning your family’s history, heritage, about your grandparents and great-grandparents, whether they were in the military or not.”

He told students that they would be surprised by the strong lineage of service to the community their family would have, and asked for them to document the stories through the use of technology.

“Learn from their struggles,” he said. “Make an effort to hear what your parents and grandparents say about their sacrifices, and I’m sure you will find a veteran in your circle of friends and their families, as well.”

One AMS student said she would do her best to thank any veterans or servicemen or women she met in the community, and she knows the difficulty of having a loved one in the armed forces.

“My sister is in the National Guard,” Keaunna Tillis said. “She’s usually the one that stands by me and up for me, and not having her around is difficult.

“If I see anyone at a store or in the public I would go up to them and say, ‘thank you’ and give them hug,” she said. “I want to show my appreciation as a citizen.”

Amos is originally from Troy, but is currently a resident of Prattville with his wife Melissa (nee McCord) and their two children, Brooks, 7, and Mary Camden, 4.

The program also included the presentation of colors by Boy Scout Troop 46, the “National Anthem” sung by Tambry Jewell, AMS band performances of “America the Beautiful” and “Armed Forces Medley,” and songs by the AMS and AHS Chorus.