From nearly sunrise until sunset next Friday, the names of thousands of fallen troops will echo through the downtown campus of Pima Community College.
In a prelude to Saturday's welcome-home parade for veterans, the college is conducting a last roll call of sorts, seeking volunteers to recite the names of every U.S. service member claimed by conflicts in Iraq or Afghanistan.
The ceremony begins at 7 a.m. and may not end until as late as 7 p.m. A bell will toll as each name is announced.
"We anticipate it will take 10-12 hours to read the names," college spokesman C.J. Karamargin said. Nearly 6,400 troops have died at war since the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001, according to the Department of Defense
The public is invited to attend the service, being held in the courtyard of the downtown campus at 1255 N. Stone Ave. Those who have lost a loved one in any war are especially welcome.
"On this day, we will honor the memory of those men and women who have sacrificed their lives and served their country with honor," Jerry Haynes, campus vice president for student development, said in the news release.
"We welcome all who wish to participate or simply sit with us to remember these heroes."
To volunteer to be a name-reader, contact Haynes at email@example.com or by phone at 206-7263.
PCC students and employees who served in the military also will take part Saturday in the welcome home parade for veterans being held downtown. It begins at 10:30 a.m. at North Stone Avenue at Pennington Street. It's then set to travel west onto West Franklin Street, south onto North Main Avenue, east onto West Alameda Street, and south on North Church Avenue and back to Pennington.
Contact reporter Carol Ann Alaimo at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 573-4138.