Labor Day Weekend Veterans Tribute Planned
This Labor Day Weekend, Leadville will welcome veterans from around the U.S. and from all branches of services for the inaugural Two-Mile High Veterans Weekend, August 30 – 31. To mark the service of these American heroes, the community has planned several activities, including a kick-off event at the Tabor Opera House, a Veterans Memorial Wall Tribute and a free evening of Celtic music at the Tabor Opera House for veterans and their families.
Major General Larry Nicholson and his former State Department advisor J.K. Weston served tours together in Fallujah, Iraq, and Helmand, Afghanistan.
General Nicholson was wounded by a rocket attack at Camp Fallujah in September 2004. After recovering from his wounds at Bethesda Naval Military Hospital, he returned to Iraq to complete his tour. In 2006 and 2007, he served again in Fallujah as the commanding officer of the 5th Marine Regiment. Weston represented the State Department in Iraq and Afghanistan from 2003 to 2010.
After returning home, they considered how to mark the service of veterans from all branches. Many troops expressed interest in an informal get-together. They chose Colorado because Weston has family roots in the Rocky Mountain region, and Leadville because it is home to Lance Corporal Nick Palmer, who was killed in action in Fallujah in December 2004. Palmer was part of Nicholson’s Marine regiment. Rather than organize a reunion in a big city, Nicholson and Weston decided Leadville would be an ideal venue because of its strong ties to veterans; its historic setting, characters and stories; and because the city is a symbol of resilience and reinvention with a beautiful Rocky Mountain backdrop.
Friday, Aug. 30
- 7 p.m. – Kick-off Event at the historic Tabor Opera House: welcome and opening remarks by Leadville Mayor Jaime Stuever; introduction of the local VFW; featured speaker Major General Larry Nicholson; and recognition for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans and their families. Everyone is invited to attend this free event and show their support for our veterans.
Saturday, Aug. 30
- Morning – Free time to explore Leadville and Lake County
- Afternoon – Lunch and hiking at Turquoise Lake
- 4 p.m. – Lake County Veterans Memorial Wall Tribute at Evergreen Cemetery with Nick Palmer’s family
- 5:30 p.m. – Gather at the Silver Dollar Saloon for dinner and drinks.
- 7 p.m. – The FEAST Celtic Band will perform at The Historic Tabor Opera House; free admission for veterans and their families; tickets available to the general public at a cost of $15 for adults, children younger than 14 get in free.
Visitors may wish to include a trip to nearby Camp Hale, training site for the 10th Mountain Division during World War II. Interpretive signs at Camp Hale and at a monument at the entrance to Ski Cooper detail the history of these soldiers.
Fundraiser for Local Officer This Saturday
This Saturday, August 31 here will be a community garage sale to raise funds for Lake County Sheriff Deputy Grant Williams. The sale will be held from 7 a.m. – 1 p.m. at 903 Copper St. (off Mountain View Drive).
Donations are being accepted and can be dropped off at that address, the Leadville Police Department, or the Lake County Sheriff’s office.
All proceeds will go to Deputy in effort to assist him with his continuously increasing medical bills, and cost of living while he is not able to work. Officer Williams is fighting cancer. Join the conversation on their Facebook Page.