LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — Our top trending stories on the web include: a sacred memorial site is open to the public today, a veteran is using farming to help cope with his post traumatic stress disorder and the giraffe icon statue that has been sitting on the top of the West Lansing Meijer gas station has returned.
The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier Plaza is Open to the Public Today
The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier Plaza in Arlington National Cemetery is opening to the public for the first time in nearly 100 years today.
Typically only the Sentinels of the third United States Infantry Regiment are allowed to be near the memorial.
Due to the monumental moment, the public is able to approach the sacred site.
Also in celebration of the 100th anniversary, there will be a public flower ceremony.
“The Tomb has served as the heart of Arlington National Cemetery. It is a people’s memorial that inspires reflection on service, valor, sacrifice and mourning. As a sacred memorial site and the grave of three unknown American service members, the Tomb connects visitors with the legacy of the U.S. armed forces throughout the nation’s history.”Karen Durham-Aguilera, executive director of Army National Military Cemeteries and Arlington National Cemetery
Those who would like to attend the free event can register here, but walkups are also acceptable.
The event is free from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. today.
Veteran Uses Farming to Help with PTSD
An Iraq War veteran from West Michigan is using farming to help him cope with his post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
He served in the United States Marine Corps and began his career just before the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
Justin Bajema was injured twice while serving in Iraq and was awarded a purple heart.
“Nov. 29 of 2004, we were on nighttime patrol and ended up getting ambushed by an (improvised explosive device) going about five miles per hour,” Bajema said. “I was the first vehicle and I heard over the radio, ‘I think I see someone.’ Before he got done, bomb detonated.”
Bajema lived, but was wounded and ultimately brought back to U.S. for treatment.
After many surgeries and healing, he started Rebel Pastures near Rockford with his wife.
The Bajemas raised 3,600 chickens this year. The farm sells pasture-raised chickens and eggs through online sellers like Market Wagon.
Bajema said that farming and talking about what happened helps him cope with his PTSD.
“I think farming is a cool way that we can bring together veterans and civilians to work side by side and together on something that is greater than them,” Bajema said.
Giraffe Statue Returns to the Top of the West Lansing Meijer Gas Station
The 14-foot-tall giraffe statue that has been sitting on top of the West Lansing Meijer gas station for more than 50 years, has finally returned back to it’s original spot.
After renovations and updates at the gas station, the giraffe has recently been repositioned back into it’s original location.
Community members see the giraffe as a local icon and many are glad it’s back.
Watch the video here.