Lieutenant Governor honored in Bedford for service as a Marine veteran

Published: May. 28, 2023 at 7:31 PM EDT
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BEDFORD, Va. (WDBJ) - People across our hometowns continue to honor veterans during the Memorial Day weekend. Two churches in Bedford celebrated a leader and veteran in the Commonwealth.

With music, prayers, and a lot of clapping – community members celebrated all women, but especially those who have served, at the Annual Women’s Day gathering.

Lieutenant Governor Winsome Sears was recognized with this year’s Women’s Day Achievement Award.

“She certainly made history being the first Black African-American woman elected to a statewide office. And she’s a Marine veteran,” said Bedford Mayor Tim Black. “So, we couldn’t ask for a more important and well-respected person to be here with us on Memorial Day weekend.”

Sears says her passion to serve as an elected official comes from the story of Daniel in the bible. So, being recognized at a church was especially meaningful.

“Growing up you never see yourself in these positions. I don’t know, maybe some people do, but I never wanted to be a Lieutenant Governor, but the Lord called me when I asked him about Daniel,” explained Sears. “And so here I am, I guess, being a Daniel and doing the things that need to be done.”

Sears was highlighted for her sacrifice and service to the nation as a Marine Veteran. Local leaders say she is an inspiration for the next generation.

“We’re proud of her. We’re proud to have her here in Bedford,” said Virginia Alliance for Women Leader Brenda Gibb. “And she’s a really good example of a successful path for these up-and-coming young leaders.”

During the holiday weekend and beyond - Sears wants to remind everyone to salute those who are no longer here.

“We have to remember on Memorial Day and not just Memorial Day that some gave the ultimate sacrifice for his country,” added Sears. “And America may not be all that she’s supposed to be but like we say in church she ain’t what she used to be.”

Sears will still speak Monday at the Nation D-Day Memorial, which is now virtual due to inclement weather.