5th annual Tempe Community Salutes recognizes future military service members

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Every year, hundreds of young men and women in Arizona make the important decision to serve our country in the armed forces. More than 50 will be recognized in Tempe. Community Salutes is an annual celebration to recognize and salute future military service members, and to give these men, women and their families the hometown sendoff they deserve. 


This year’s Community Salutes will take place at the Tempe Center for the Arts on Monday, May 13 at 6 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

“We are so grateful for these incredible men and women as they begin their service to our country,” said Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell. “We hope this celebration will show them how much we value their contributions to our community and to our nation. We want them to stay connected to their hometown and bring their talents back to Tempe once their duty has been completed.”

During the May 13 ceremony, each student will receive a First to Say Thank You coin and military stole to wear at their high school graduation ceremonies. There will be remarks from:

·         Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell

·         Col. Wanda Wright, retired U.S. Air Force and Director of Arizona Department of Veterans Services

·         Maj. Brian Cillessen, Silver Star Recipient, US Marine Corp (retired)   


The program will include performances by the Arizona National Guard 108th Army Band with special appearances by Lois Zozobrado and The Manhattan Dolls. A light reception will follow.

This will be the fifth year of Tempe Community Salutes, which was the vision of Vice Mayor Arredondo-Savage. “It was the first program of its kind in the state to demonstrate support for high school seniors and their families,” Arredondo-Savage said.

The City of Tempe would like to thank the following sponsors for supporting this year’s event:

Military Stole Sponsor — Opus Group

Challenge Coin Sponsor – Sender Associates 

Stars and Stripes sponsors

Cox Communications

Gammage & Burnham

Navy Federal

OLIV Residences Tempe


US Army

Waste Management

For more information, visit tempe.gov/veterans.

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