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VIDEO: FSU community thanks veterans as they're honored during FSU-Miami game

Service members held a pregame tailgate and were brought on the field in the third quarter
Posted at 8:43 PM, Nov 11, 2023
  • Collegiate Veterans Association held a pregame tailgate for the community to come together to celebrate Veterans Day.
  • The CVA was honored during the third quarter of FSU's 27-20 win over rivals Miami.
  • Watch now to see how the veterans were celebrated and hear how much it means to them.


Celebrating veterans all over College Town, I'm Alberto Camargo, your neighborhood reporter.

Florida State celebrated a 27-20 win over rivals Miami and brave service members on Military Appreciation Day.

It started with the Collegiate Veterans Association's tailgate pregame.

Dozens of veterans gathered outside Doak Campbell Stadium for some good food, vibes andmost importantly, "the bonds with military are just super strong, so it's about just connecting people together, giving people a community."

From linguists like Joe McManus to cooks to combat veterans, it's a safe space for all.

"It's important because it just feels great to be accepted by people who know your struggles and what you went through."

It was also the start of something new.

The John Wirka Jr. Memorial Fund is a new program between the FSU Student Veterans Center and the United for the Fallen to provide scholarships to children of fallen soldiers, also known as Gold Star families.

"That's what makes community really really important, you know what I mean? So we can be a strong social support for them. We're like a brotherhood, you know, brother and sisterhood."

In the stadium, things got off to a flying start with Special Ops parachuters getting the crowd up pregame.

At halftime, the Marching Chiefs played the songs of each military branch, and in the third quarter, FSU veterans were honored in the south end zone.

Joe says it couldn't have been a better occasion for the service member community to have that spotlight.

"It's so cool having the alumni back. It's so awesome how we were able to sync up not only Veterans Day but a giant game where everyone wants to come."

It was a nailbiter of a game, but a great occasion for the vets in attendance.