WINDY CITY TIMES
||AVER celebrates LGBTQ+ veterans at annual Veterans Day dinner
This article shared 1766 times since Sun Nov 12, 2023
Writer and historian Owen Keehnen was keynote speaker at the the American Veterans for Equal Rights (AVER) Chicago Chapter's 32nd annual LGBTQ Veterans Day Banquet held on Veterans Day at Ann Sather restaurant on Belmont.
Keehnen spoke about the importance of telling many distinct stories that represent history, including Chicago stories and those of LGBTQ+ people who serve and have served in the military. He also spoke about the importance of "place," and remembering the details where we have been physically as a community, from the Belmont Rocks to bars, bookstores, and more.
After the keynote remarks by Keehnen, he was presented the Happy Warrior Award by Jim Darby, the chapter's president emeritus. Also honored with a Happy Warrior Award were the Battle Betties, a volunteer group serving military members, families and veterans.
In October at the National AVER conference, Darby and his husband of more than 60 years, Patrick Bova, were honored for their work. At the Chicago event, they were handed those awards by local AVER members who attended that national event. Darby was honored for his long service to AVER and Bova for his support and archival work.
Brandon Chong, president of the AVER Chicago Chapter, was emcee. The evening opened with a performance of the "National Anthem" by Dean Ogren and included video messages from Mayor Brandon Johnson, Congressman Mike Quigley, Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky, and Senators Tammy Duckworth and Dick Durbin. Quigley also attended the opening reception.
Susan Jones performed "Taps" to close the evening.
See www.facebook.com/AVERChicagoChapter/ or www.averchicago.org .
This article shared 1766 times since Sun Nov 12, 2023
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