Campus Salutes Veterans

Photo: Two students wrap yellow ribbon around a tree.
Student veterans Alyssa Senft and Mark Lum participate in ribbon duty on the Quad, on Monday (Nov. 7). Both of these veterans are recent transfer students; Senft is majoring in animal biology and Lum in plant sciences. (Karin Higgins/UC Davis)

The Davis campus is honoring its military veterans at a reception this afternoon (Nov. 9) and with a yellow-ribbon display on the Quad through Veterans Day this Friday (Nov. 11) and lasting through the weekend.

Today’s reception, for staff, faculty and student veterans, is scheduled from 4:45 to 6 p.m. in the Aspen Room at the Shared Services Center, 260 Cousteau Place, Suite 150 (free parking). Light refreshments will be served; no RSVPs required,

“We are honoring our veterans and their service,” said the reception organizer, Bruce Mattos, a veteran himself and a member of the Veteran Constituency Group for staff, faculty and students. As the recruitment manager in Human Resources, Mattos often works with veterans who are transitioning back to the regular work force.

 Judge Morrison C, England Jr.

He’s recruited another veteran as guest speaker: Sacramento-based U.S. District Judge Morrison C. England Jr. He’s a veteran of the Army Reserve, Judge Advocate General Corps, holding the rank of major. He served from 1988 until his confirmation as a federal judge in 2002.

He last served in the JAG Corps as a senior defense counsel. He received the Meritorious Service Medal with one Oak Leaf cluster, the Army Commendation Medal with one Oak Leaf cluster and the Army Achievement Medal.

The Quad ribbon display has been a campus tradition since 2011. Student veterans, the Veterans Services Office and the Veteran Constituency Group (staff, faculty and students) put up the ribbons late Monday afternoon (Nov. 7).

 Yellow sign on tree.

Yellow signs describing the ribbon are a new addition this year. The signs read: “What is the history behind the display of yellow ribbons? For a long time, ribbons have been kept as a symbol of remembrance of men and women who served in places far from home. Traditionally they were kept especially by wives, mothers and sisters in times of war in memory of their service boys abroad. They are powerful symbols of the ties that bind.

“The yellow ribbons began appearing in large numbers after the gulf war when we began sending large numbers of troops overseas to the Middle East. Today this tradition lives on as our men and women continue to serve around the globe.

“In 2011 UC Davis veteran alumnus Felipe Grimaldo initiated the idea to tie ribbons on all the trees in the Quad to raise awareness about our men and women still abroad, serving, and for the ones who have returned home, including our faculty, staff and student veterans.”

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