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Veterans Receive Long Overdue Recognition

We take the time today to recognize and honor all those who have sacrificed in one way or another for our country.
Lex "Butch" Davis served in the Army for nearly nine years and says he is thrilled to see the support now available to those who struggle with PTSD.
Lex "Butch" Davis served in the Army for nearly nine years and says he is thrilled to see the support now available to those who struggle with PTSD.
The Arkansas Department of Veterans Affairs hosted its annual Veterans Day Ceremony Monday in the River Market East Pavilion.
The Arkansas Department of Veterans Affairs hosted its annual Veterans Day Ceremony Monday in the River Market East Pavilion.
Got shot up in Vietnam, and they retired me out.
LITTLE ROCK, AR -- Monday's Veterans Day celebration in the River Market was a new experience for Lex "Butch" Davis.

"I wasn't real sure about coming over here," Davis said.

His time in the Army hasn't always been well received. Davis joined the Army at the young age of 16 in 1961.

"[I] didn't know what else to do with my life," he said. "Made the perfect selection." I stayed in eight years, eight months, 21 days."

Davis served for eight years, eight months and 21 days. It's a specific amount of time, but it's not surprising given the way his career in the military came to an end.

Nearly a decade of service ended with one blast.

"It's called an IED now, it was a boobie trap then," Davis said. "Got shot up in Vietnam, and they retired me out."

Davis immediately struggled with post traumatic stress disorder.

"I went through it for about 25 years," he said.

And not to mention all the grief and lack of support he received.

At the ceremony, Gov. Mike Beebe spoke directly to veterans like Davis, ensuring the state's support for them now.

"Many Americans took it out on our heroes that wore the uniform, that were just doing their duty," he said to the crowd. "Arkansans salute you. Arkansans honor you. Arkansans appreciate you."

Beebe ended his speech saying Arkansas loves the military, saluted those there and walked off.

After so many years, Davis said he welcomes the change and new experience.

"I have never seen it this good before," he said.
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