Upstate Salute honors veterans with a night full of entertainment

GREENVILLE, S.C.—Veterans from across the Upstate are invited to a free celebration in their honor hosted by employees from three of the region’s largest employers and the Greenville Drive.

The first SC Veterans Upstate Salute will be held this Veterans Day (Nov. 11) at Fluor Field starting at 5 p.m. The event will include a Tracy Lawrence concert, 21-gun salute, fireworks, and opportunities to meet community agencies supporting veterans and their families. Registration is required for the event at upstatesalute.com and a complete schedule of events can be viewed at the website.

Upstate Veterans Alliance is organizing SC Veterans Upstate Salute. The alliance includes veterans employed by GE, Greenville Health System (GHS), Michelin and employees from the Greenville Drive.

“We are excited to bring veterans and their families together for this event to say thank you,” said Brandon Hutson, GE Veterans Network chairman and Upstate Veterans Alliance director. “We are also looking forward to growing the Upstate Veterans Alliance together with other local veteran groups to have a positive impact on veterans in our community over the coming years.”

The idea for SC Veterans Upstate Salute grew out of Veterans Day ceremonies held by Upstate companies to honor employees who served in the military and those hosted in smaller municipalities.

“We recognized that there is a strong desire across the Upstate to celebrate our veterans and there is potential to have a larger community gathering to bring more people together,” said Kevin McBride, director of the Greenville Health System Military & Government Liaison Office.

The evening will include entertainment by the City of Greenville Pipes and Drums, a special forces parachute team, a color guard and military band, a warbirds flight and the Greenville In Harmony Show Chorus. Lawrence will headline the event. He has recorded 18 No. 1 singles and 22 songs that have made Billboard Top 10 lists. He is credited with shaping the sound of country music over the past 20 years.

Members of Upstate Veterans Alliance sought event sponsors, booked entertainment and worked with the Greenville Drive on the evening’s logistics.

“We’re honored to be a part of this mission, along with our valued business partners here in the Upstate, and look forward to this being the first of many successful Upstate Salute events. It’s with great pride that we open up Fluor Field to the community to celebrate those who sacrifice so much to protect our nation’s freedoms,” said Eric Jarinko, general manager with the Greenville Drive.

Many Upstate companies have employee resource groups for veterans and Upstate Veterans Alliance welcomes other businesses to join. Businesses, individuals and groups interested in providing sponsorship for Upstate Salute should visit the website to learn more.

“This event along with the Upstate Veterans Alliance allows those of us who served in the military to network with other veterans while serving our community and addressing the needs of those who served,” said Sheldon Landgrave, military quality supply manager with Michelin North America.

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