By Lt. Mike Smith, AA/Public Information Officer
Ironwood State Prison
Many who serve in the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation have also served the country through military service, something which didn’t go unnoticed by one prison.
Ironwood State Prison (ISP) recently held a Veterans Day ceremony for U.S. military veterans.
Although the ceremony paid tribute to all veterans, the ceremony focused on honoring ISP’s employees who were also United States armed forces veterans.
ISP’s Honor Guard posted colors and Kolby Robertson sang the National Anthem during the ceremony on Friday, Nov. 7.
Three guest speakers included Correctional Officer Dennis Duffield, U.S. Marine Corps (USMC); Associate Warden Sue Smith, U.S. Navy; and Lt. Scott Richards, USMC.
Lt. Richards’ speech moved many in attendance as he recognized Sgt. Bryan Perez, a U.S. Marine Corps soldier from Blythe who recently passed away.
Although not having served together, both he and Sgt. Perez served in the same unit, 1st Battalion 7th Marines, aka, Suicide Charley.
Lt. Richards’ speech had a profound impact on the audience and moved many to tears.
In addition to the speakers, about 90 employees who were U.S. military veterans heard a reading of their names, branch of service and received certificates of appreciation for their service to the country.
“It’s important we thank our veterans and they are reminded their service to this country is the reason we live so comfortably and enjoy the freedoms we have,” said Acting Warden Neil McDowell. “Our staff is the finest in the state and the military plays a large role in that.”
The ceremony concluded with the Honor Guard retrieving colors. Refreshments followed the service.
CDCR employees honor veterans with recollections (in two parts), http://www.insidecdcr.ca.gov/2014/11/cdcr-employees-honor-veterans-with-tales-part-1/
See how High Desert State Prison helped a wounded veteran, http://www.insidecdcr.ca.gov/2014/11/wounded-soldier-gets-home-building-help-from-high-desert-state-prison-california-correctional-center/
Avenal State Prison recognized for its work with veterans, http://www.insidecdcr.ca.gov/2014/08/avenal-state-prison-recognized-for-dedication-to-military-veterans-staff-and-inmates/
CSP-Solano veterans find support in inmate group, http://www.insidecdcr.ca.gov/2014/06/csp-solano-veterans-find-support-in-inmate-group/
CDCR recognized for purchasing from small businesses, disabled veterans, http://www.insidecdcr.ca.gov/2013/12/cdcr-wins-four-awards-for-purchasing-from-small-businesses-disabled-veterans/
In 2013, CSATF/SP honor guard marched in a parade with 20,000 spectators, http://www.insidecdcr.ca.gov/2013/11/csatfsp-honor-guard-marches-before-big-veterans-day-crowd/