Retired Colonel Martin Breaker to speak on Monday, November 12, 2012, in honor of Veterans Day at U of M, Crookston in Kiehle Auditorium at 4:15 p.m.; Flag Ceremony to be held in the morning at 11 a.m. on Campus Mall

The Veterans Support Group at the University of Minnesota, Crookston is marking Veterans Day on Monday, November 12, 2012, with several commemorative events. The public is invited to attend all activities. 

At 11 a.m. there will be a Veterans Day ceremony with a flag raising at 11:11 a.m. This specific time was chosen because it ties into the origin of Veterans Day.  The day was set aside and originally called "Armistice Day" and mainly recognized WWI veterans. Armistice Day celebrated the armistice which ended WWI. That armistice was signed at 11:11 a.m. on the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918. After WWII, Armistice Day was changed to Veterans Day to honor all war veterans. 

Following the flag ceremony, everyone will move to the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial on campus for a wreath ceremony.

Concluding the day, Retired Colonel Martin Breaker (photo at right) will speak at 4:15 p.m. in Kiehle Auditorium. Breaker, who is an instructor in the Business Department at the U of M, Crookston retired in 2003 from the Army Reserve after 32 years in active duty and National Guard and Reserve duty in Minnesota. Following the scandal of Abu Ghraib, Breaker volunteered to return to duty and served nearly three years in Iraq from 2005 to 2008.

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The Veterans Support Group mission is to raise awareness of veterans and their service to country along with currently serving. The group is open to everyone. The president of the group is Calvin Meyer, a senior majoring in aviation from Albertville, Minn. Breaker and Mike Vivion, chief pilot at the U of M, Crookston, serve as the group's advisor. 

The commemoration of Veterans Day is a long standing tradition on the Crookston campus dating back to the earliest days of the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial. The memorial was constructed in 1920 in honor of the young men and women who attended the Northwest School of Agriculture, predecessor of the U of M, Crookston, who died serving our country. 

Since then, more plates have been added commemorating not only those in the military who attended Northwest School of Agriculture but the University of Minnesota Technical Institute in Crookston and the University of Minnesota, Crookston as well. 

Today the University of Minnesota, Crookston delivers 26 bachelor's degree programs, 18 minors, and 39 concentrations on campus--as well as 10 degrees online--in the areas of agriculture and natural resources; business; liberal arts and education; and math, science and technology.  With an enrollment of 1,800 undergraduates from 25 countries and 40 states, the Crookston campus offers a supportive, close-knit atmosphere that leads to a prestigious University of Minnesota degree.  "Small Campus. Big Degree."  To learn more, visit

Contact: Mike Vivion, chief pilot, 218-281-8114 (; Elizabeth Tollefson, assistant director, communications, 218-281-8432 (