Lest we forget, next Monday is Veterans Day, when cities and citizens across America will honor veterans with parades, flags and accolades.

It’s a patriotic “thank you” to the 21.5 million living veterans who served in peace time and in war and to the millions of fallen from past generations until the present who kept our flag of freedom flying.

One of the many free patriotic events planned throughout the greater Kansas City area will be Channel 41’s local “Hero Show” this Saturday from noon until 7 p.m. at the Kansas City Power & Light district in downtown Kansas City.

Bridget Adams, the marketing and development specialist for Channel 41 and 38 The Spot, has amassed an impressive array of entertainers, military exhibits, sports, TV and radio personalities, along with VIP’s, speakers and dignitaries.

The kaleidoscope of entertainers includes the popular KC Bettys, a World War II type singing show a la the Andrews Sisters. Three local bands will also be donating their services.

I have been invited to speak and will assist in producing a U.S. flag-folding ceremony aided by area Gold Star mothers and families along with the Gladstone VFW color guard. It is a tribute to the fallen and concludes with my video poem “Please Play Taps For Me,” now nearing 2,200 hits on YouTube. I will also recite my publicized poem, “I Held The Flag Today.” I had the honor of reading it at the first candlelight ceremony for the victims of United Flight 93 in Shankesville, Pa., only 13 days after 9/11.

The Saturday veterans tribute will conclude with country singer Clay Walker.

In a poem dedicated to veterans I asked: Where would we be: If they had not served? If they had not flown our colors? If they had not taken on armor? If they had not taken a stand”? If they had not shared foxholes? If they had not sacrificed their youth? Where would we be without them? The answers are obvious.

Further, when you personally meet a veteran, or an active duty member, you shouldn’t need Nov. 11 to remind you to thank them for their service.

I give you President John Adams’ toast: Independence forever.

Jerry Plantz lives in Lee’s Summit. His website is at www.Jerryplantz.com. Reach him at jerryplantz@msn.com.