Camp Shelby Celebrates Armed Forces Day - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Camp Shelby Celebrates Armed Forces Day

To honor our veterans for Armed Forces Day, the Armed Forces Museum at Camp Shelby hosted a living history day on Saturday.

Reenactors made presentations throughout the museum.

Recognizing branches of the military throughout the ages, the events at Camp Shelby paid tribute to the soldiers of today and of the past.

"We have our guides set our throughout the museum, and when you are in the World War One trench, for example, a doughboy tells you about warfare in World War One," museum curator Chad Daniels said.

Learning from books is one thing, but these historians are here to make history something you can touch. They volunteer to show 'hands-on' that the price of freedom is high.

"A lot of good people sacrificed themselves for freedom and they deserve to be honored,"  reenactor Jim Clark said.

"The reason I'm doing it is to show gratitude and appreciation for previous veterans who died to give us what we have today. Freedom is not free. It's the price you have to pay," said reenactor Michael Turner, who portrays a D-Day Paratrooper.

Two hundred and fifty veterans of the 31st infantry division group arrived to take a special tour of the camp and museum.

Retired four-star General Emmett H. Walker welcomed the veterans and said, "Don't hesitate to ask questions. That's what we want you to do."

Traditionally, this group was made up of troops from the Deep South and that's why they are called the "Dixie Division."

"We feel like it's a band of brothers you come back to your initial roots. They were inducted here at Camp Shelby," Jim Jackson said from the 31st Infantry Division

The soldiers fought in World War II and Korea and also had a special assignment from the president Kennedy.

"President Kennedy issued an executive order to put James Meredith into the University of Ole Miss, so the people that put the first black man in Ole Miss was the thirty-first infantry Dixie division," said Jackson.

If you are interested in visitng the museum it is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from 9-4:30. There are security measures in place at Camp Shelby, but if you bring a picture ID, the officers at the gate will issue you a pass to the museum.

By Nathan Mihelich

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