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      Vets Share Experiences of Changing Face of War

      Veterans get a big welcome at a ceremony hosted in their honor at Weslaco High School.

      Vets from all walks of life proudly displayed their branch of service and spoke about their experiences and bridging the gap to the new generation of vets.

      Rogelio Ramirez served in the U.S. Army and Reserves for 30 years.

      The Vietnam and Desert Storm Veteran has seen many facets of war.

      Some that stay the same.

      "The younger veterans, it TMs a different war but still the same concept," believes Ramirez.

      Others have changed as time has passed.

      "Everything is a lot easier, better weapons, better technology," adds Ramirez.

      "A wounded soldier can get medical attention and a lot of soldiers they survive because of the medical attention," said Edgar Hernandez.

      Specialist Hernandez, is a former 21-day prisoner of war in Operation Iraqi Freedom who speaks from experience.

      He's a part of the new generation of veteran emerging from the fold.

      He said the culture of acceptance and support in the community is changing.

      Hernandez said, It was harder for them because they didn't receive a good welcome home. Today people are more supportive of the troops. People are more patriotic."

      The men said support from the government evolved too.

      "The Veterans Administration has done a lot for us disabled vets and people coming out of war right now," Ramirez said.

      Adds Hernandez, There are some private companies that help vets. Also, they get special loans at banks."

      Whether it TMs 10, 20, or 50 years, the consensus remains that the experiences and hardships are outweighed by the rewards.

      "Many veterans they've seen war and their friends getting killed. Its' good for us to feel that people love us, said Hernandez.