Thousands Celebrate July 4th At Fort Gordon

The rainy
weather didn't stop thousands of people from attending the Independence Day
Celebration at Fort Gordon.

“I
like that it's family friendly. You know, don't feel nervous or anything like
that. I enjoy all the different vendors and love the Swinging Medallions. So I
enjoy hearing them play,” says Jessica Howard of Wrens, GA.

The event
had music, carnival rides and plenty of food. But those aren't the only reasons
people keep celebrating at Fort Gordon every July 4th. Many there say it's
about connecting.

“The
community doesn't always have a first hand experience of the military. A lot of
people's knowledge of the military is through movies or news and TV, or the war
experience. And here they can talk to us face to face, find out what we are
about, see that we don't have any secret agenda, we're just here to protect the
people, serve the community and provide examples of leadership, and train
leadership,” says Army Staff Sgt. Daniel Gaskel.

As adults
and children connect with our armed forces, they are also thinking about the
importance of our country's independence.

“It
just means freedom. Freedom to be myself in this country. Freedom to worship
God and freedom to say what I want to say,” says Howard.

“It's
being an American, it's being a patriot, and good ol' Army all the way,” says Miguel Carrion.

“The
fourth of July is about taking time to recollect what we have done as a
country. How far we've come and who has paid for it. And to celebrate what we
have,” says Gaskel.

But of
course, the 20 minute fireworks display is also something to celebrate.

Fort Gordon officials say that the
Independence Day Celebration didn't cost taxpayers a dime. Sponsors and vendors
provided the funding for the event.

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