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Archive for Sunday, November 7, 1993

ARMISTICE DAY MEMORIES

November 7, 1993

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Thursday marks the 75th anniversary of the signing of the armistice to end World War I, and one of the few surviving local WWI veterans will be honored.

At age 96, John Holloway has seen his share of Armistice Days, now called Veterans Days.

"I can't remember how many," he said.

On Thursday, Holloway will attend local Veterans Day ceremonies marking the 75th anniversary of the end of World War I.

He is one of a handful of WWI veterans living in Lawrence and the only such veteran expected to attend local ceremonies.

The ceremonies will be held at 11:11 a.m. Thursday, at Alford-Clarke Post No. 852 of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, 138 Ala. Holloway, at the ceremonies, will be presented with a medal commemorating the 75th anniversary of the end of World War I.

Holloway, who lives in a local apartment, said Veterans Day stirs old and new memories of Lawrence and the effect of various wars and conflicts over the years.

Not all of those memories are glorious, he said.

"I'm like the Quakers, I don't believe in war," said Holloway, who volunteered for service in the Army in 1918.

He said that although the United States played key roles in World War I and World War II, he says the necessity of many conflicts is questionable.

"A lot of the public probably support the idea of this country being aggressive and getting involved in conflict," he said. "I think it's a bad thing to get mixed up in it, myself."

As for today's conflicts in which the U.S. military is involved although the nation is not directly affected, including Somalia, Holloway said, "It would probably be a good thing if the boys could be brought home.

"You've probably heard of one of those conscientious objectors. I wasn't one of them, but I believed a lot like the Quakers in keeping out of a lot of these conflicts.

"This country gets pulled in on a lot of (wars), and a lot of these things cost money."

Holloway was stationed in Lawrence for a portion of World War I. He never made it overseas, but had a brother, William Gerald, who was wounded while fighting in the war in France.

Holloway displayed several antiques and trinkets that he has collected over the years.

"There's not too many people who remember Armistice Day," he said. "I remember they had a big party down on Massachusetts Street when they found out (the war had ended)"

Air Force Col. Cedric V. Hunter Jr., commander of the Reserve Officer's Training Corps at Kansas University, will present the commemorative medal to Holloway at the local Veterans Day ceremonies.

@reefer:Memorials honor WWI war dead; Veterans Day ceremonies set. Page 5A.

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