Veterans Day lasts just one day. But veterans of all stripes are still being honored by the Village of Corrales through the end of the month.

Assistant Village Clerk Skye Devivi put together a veterans photo display on the lobby walls of the Village administration offices, 4324 Corrales Road, inviting Corralenos – and anyone else – to contribute photos of themselves or family members who served in the military. With the owners permission, copies are being made and will be housed at the Corrales Community Library to be viewed by generations to come.

“We had a fantastic response,” Devivi said.

It’s an impressive display and worth a trip to the office just to see it.

Almost every inch of the walls are covered by photos. Some are grouped together and have a portion of a wall to themselves, like pictures of village employees and those provided by Sandoval County that decorate the walls at the county administrative building. That presentation helped inspire what Devivi hoped to accomplish with her display.

One portion of a wall is even dedicated to K-9 veterans.

“We wanted to make sure everyone was represented,” said Devivi, who welcomed photos from Space Force, Merchant Marines, Army Reserve and others to contribute to the display.

“I thought it turned out pretty good,” she said. “We need to do some to show our appreciation to our veterans.”

The display includes an American flag donated by Terry Brown, commander of the local VFW Post 5432. Devivi also included an encased flag that covered the casket of her father, a military veteran buried in the Santa Fe National Cemetery. The Corrales Historical Society was a great resource, she said. But most of the display came from between 30 and 40 veterans or their loved ones living in the community or nearby.

“It’s amazing the sacrifices they made,” Devivi said of the veterans. “There were so many great stories. I met so many neat people,” she said.

Like the father who drove up from Albuquerque to include the picture of his son, who had sacrificed his life. There’s Patricia C. Justice, a retired Army nurse now living in Corrales who traveled the globe over a long career. And the Allen family of Isaac, John and John Jr., representing three generations.

In addition to the display, the village offices are serving as an outpost for Operation Gratitude. Devivi invites people to write a short note to a veteran thanking them for their service, or to sketch a picture they might appreciate. Drop it off at the village office before Dec. 8. The items will then be shipped to Operation Gratitude, a national nonprofit that supports active duty personnel. They are then included in care packages of foodstuff and handy necessities for those currently serving all over the world.

TS Last, editor

TS Last is the editor of the Corrales Comment and senior contributor to the Sandoval Signpost. A 25-year veteran of New Mexico news, he previously served as the editor of the Journal North in Santa Fe and has worked in the newsrooms of the El Defensor Chieftan and Valencia News Bulletin.

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