- The ceremonial wreath-laying at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was followed by a walk of reflection to the burial plot of Pakistani American U.S. Army Captain Humayun Khan, who was killed in action during the Iraq War.
Members of South Asians for America (SAFA) joined representatives from several Asian American groups at the Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia, June 26, for the AAPI Salute to Service event honoring Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders veterans. SAFA is a national, grassroots organization dedicated to the education, advocacy, engagement, and mobilization of the South Asian Democratic community in the United States at the local, state, and federal levels, by increasing the civic engagement, political participation, and network of South Asians, according to its website.
The AAPI Salute to Service event included a ceremonial wreath-laying at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, followed by a walk of reflection to the burial plot of Pakistani American U.S. Army Captain Humayun Khan, who was killed in action during the Iraq War, per a SAFA Facebook post.
In attendance were active service members, veterans, AAPI community leaders and representatives of elected leaders, including representatives from the offices of Washington, D.C Mayor Muriel Bowser and Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.).
“Guests of honor who participated in the ceremonial wreath-laying at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier included Lieutenant Mark Arevalo, U.S. Navy Reserve; Captain Cynthia Macri, U.S. Navy (Retired), and Gold Star parent of Captain Khan and SAFA Advisory Council member Khizr Khan, who rose to national acclaim after speaking at the 2016 DNC National Convention,” the SAFA post said.
“An increasing number of individuals from our community are choosing to serve their country; this event is an opportunity for our community to recognize them and express our pride for what they have accomplished and our gratitude for what they have sacrificed,” the SAFA post quoted national director Neha Dewan as saying.
The event was co-organized by the National Organization for Vietnamese American Leadership (NOVAL-DC), NAAAP DC – National Association of Asian American Professionals Taiwanese American Professionals Washington, D.C. Area – TAP DC and Filipino Young Professionals of Washington D.C.