As part of Veterans Day events throughout the past week, MTSU held its 39th annual Salute to Veterans and Armed Forces football game activities on Saturday (Nov. 13) in and around Floyd Stadium.
With veterans and current service members as special guests, all activities led to the Blue Raiders Conference-USA college football game against visiting Florida International University. MTSU won the game, 50-10.
On a cool but sunny late morning, things kicked off with the memorial service at the Veterans Memorial outside the Tom H. Jackson Building. This year, the Military Science ROTC program was recognized for its 71 years of being a part of the university.
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After a picnic featuring free barbecue and other food and drink, the Salute to Veterans committee and family of the late Joe Nunley Sr. recognized John Furgess of Nashville, Tenn., as the winner of the Joe Nunley Distinguished Veteran Award. This award celebrates the career of the late Joe Nunley Sr., a World War II U.S. Army veteran, MTSU alumnus, professor, historian, athletic hall of fame inductee and former director of Alumni Affairs (now Alumni Relations). Nunley and Furgess organized the first “Salute” event in 1982.
The event, sponsored by MT Athletics and the Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center, also featured Tennessee National Guard equipment, military helicopters landing and taking off, Vets Village and special halftime salute for veterans and those still serving — with U.S. Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines and Navy theme songs performed by the MTSU Band of Blue. The 129th Tennessee Army Band, Center Mass, also performed at the memorial service and picnic.