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WDAY: The News Leader

Published December 19, 2012, 09:10 PM

National Guard service men and women give back to North Dakota veterans

Lisbon, ND (WDAY TV) - It was the party of the year for some at the North Dakota veterans home as men and women of the National Guard took the time to honor those who served before them.

By: Andrea Hubbell, WDAY Staff Reports, WDAY

Lisbon, ND (WDAY TV) - It was the party of the year for some at the North Dakota veterans home as men and women of the National Guard took the time to honor those who served before them.

Tis' the season to look back. On the memories, bad or good.

Cecil Messer's stationed here, the North Dakota veterans home but it's not his first mission.

Cecil Messer, WWII Veteran: "Got through basic and I went right straight overseas."

Marching right into World War II at only 18 years old.

"Yeah I was scared and everybody else was too."

Fast forward to Lisbon, December of 2012 where instead of launching rockets these veterans are ripping into presents.

Messer: "It's wonderful, just fantastic that somebody would bring gifts for Christmas."

He's talking about the National Guard.

Messer: "Yeah I'd never believe it would be this good."

Who brought each and every veteran a present for the holidays.

Messer: "It's just nice."

But it's not all about the gifts. It's about the people behind them.

"We kinda wanted to see what we were contributing to."

No matter which division, Army or the Airforce, each has a story to tell.

"I didn't get drafted, they did. They went to Vietnam, I went to Afghanistan."

Here this mission is simple: serving those who have served us.

Messer: "Oh yeah it brings back memories. After the war was over."

"That could be me in a few years telling young kids my story and my grandkids."

More than 130 veterans had a gift to open just in time for the holidays.

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