The program at the Georgia State Capitol in Atlanta was part of an event featuring members of the U.S. Vietnam War Commemoration program from Washington, who gathered in the capitol building to accept Gov. Nathan Deal’s proclamation in honor of the commemoration.
Musical director Waverly Rainey said the choral society was the only formal chorale and musical organization invited for the ceremony which included Deal, Gen. Claude M. Kicklighter, head of the Department of Defense Office of Commemorations, Georgia Department of Veterans Service Commissioner Pete Wheeler, the State Veterans Service Board, and many past and present personnel from different wars and military organizations.
The choral society’s board of directors in a statement said, “The ceremony’s planning committee was very excited about our appearance at the ceremony and was very impressed with our biography and 27-year history. We were very excited and honored to be invited to contribute to this historical, special and memorable event. Likewise, each singer was very proud to be given a certificate of appreciation from both the Department and State Board of Veterans Service along with affirmations and compliments afterwards.”
Deal thanked Rainey “for your presence and contributions to this ceremony,” Rainey stated in a release.
He said Kicklighter told chorale members, “I appreciate so much your professionalism and you certainly enhanced this special ceremony. You looked and sounded wonderful and I was very proud for us to participate together in making this event and its purpose a successful one.”.
The choral society’s songs included “The Star-Spangled Banner,” “Salute To The Armed Forces,” “America (My Country, ‘Tis Of Thee),” and “America The Beautiful.”
Regular choral society accompanist William Callaway performed with the group.
Following a speech highlighting and thanking attendees working to honor and remember the sacrifices of Vietnam War veterans, Deal proclaimed Sept. 19, 2013, through Nov. 11, 2025, as the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War in Georgia.
The proclamation marks the state’s official partnership with the 50th Anniversary Commemoration, a Department of Defense initiative started in 2008.
An estimated 254,000 Georgia residents – about one-third of the state’s total veteran population – are Vietnam veterans, according to the Georgia Department of Veterans Service.