Oral Roberts University holds Veterans Day chapel service, dedicates lounge

By Natasha Mitchell ('94)

Military picOral Roberts University will host its annual Veterans Day chapel service on Friday, with special patriotic music from the ORU combined choir and orchestra.

"We are honoring these men and women who have sacrificed so much. Many of our family and friends have served and are serving overseas, and we are grateful," said ORU President Mark Rutland.

Currently, the Oklahoma National Guard 45th Infantry Brigade has 2,200 soldiers deployed to Afghanistan and Kuwait. Many of those soldiers are from the Tulsa area, and some of the pictures will be displayed during the performance of "God Bless America."

The ORU Veterans organization is renaming the new Veteran Lounge, located on the second floor of the Learning Resources Center, in honor of Capt. Ryan Iannelli. The lounge's new name will be the Iannelli Memorial Veteran Lounge, and a plaque in honor of his service to our country and his time at ORU will be hung in the lounge.

Capt. Ryan Iannelli, a 2006 ORU graduate and baseball player during his time at ORU, served as a Marine Super Cobra pilot with Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron 269. On Sept. 28, 2011, he was killed during combat operation while flying his helicopter in Afghanistan.

The ORU Veteran Organization is also partnering with Blue Star Mothers to send care packages to Oklahoma National Guard Soldiers currently deployed overseas. ORU students will bring items from a list provided to them or personal encouragement messages for the event. Friday's chapel offering will be given to Blue Star Mothers to send the care packages to the soldiers.