GALLIPOLIS, Ohio — The Gallipolis Veterans Day program, including a parade and ceremony, will be held Thursday, Nov. 11.
The parade will begin at 10:30 a.m. followed with a ceremony at 11 a.m. at the Gallipolis City Park.
This year’s ceremony speaker will be Daniel R. Eakins, administrator Office of Policy and Veterans Programs, Ohio Department of Veterans Services.
Eakins is the son of a Vietnam Veteran, raised in Jefferson, Ohio. After the September 11, 2001 attacks in Washington and New York, he enlisted in the United States Army.
During his military career, Eakins earned his commission at Officer Candidate School, served as a tank platoon leader with the 2nd Battalion 34th Armor Regiment, leading his platoon on more than 300 combat patrol missions in Iraq in 2005.
Eakins earned decoration for meritorious service seven times during his career in the Army, including Bronze Star for his combat service in Iraq. He was also promoted to major.
Later Eakins joined the Ohio National Guard serving as Company Commander and Battalion executive officer with the 16th Engineer Brigade.
Eakins has served as a veteran policy advocate with the state of Ohio for the last 13 years, 12 of those being with the Ohio Department of Veterans Services.
During his time as a policy advocate, Eakins has “authored and implemented state legislation and initiatives that have expanded opportunities in higher education, professional licensing, business, and employment for veterans, service members, and their families,” according to a recent press release.
In both 2011 and 2017, Eakins was recognized as Veteran Advocate of the year bu the Ohio chapter of the Vietnam Veterans of America and Governor John Kasich. In 2012, he was the recipient of the Governor’s Award for Employee Excellence and named Veteran Small Business Champion by the U.S. Small Business Administration in Ohio in 2016.
Eakins is a 1998 graduate of Miami University and currently resides in Columbus.
The event is sponsored by the Gallia County Veterans Service Commission.
All veterans, veteran service groups and community organizations are welcome to participate in the parade. Those interested are asked to contact the Gallia County Veterans Service office at 740-446-2005, no later that Nov. 5, to confirm participation.