City of Largo Presents First Barbara Bush Citizen Patriot Award at Veterans Day Event

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The City of Largo Florida will present the first annual Barbara Bush Citizen Patriot Award at its Veterans Day Event. Congressman Bob Clement (D-TN) will be the keynote speaker.

Contact: Greg Brown, (727) 586-7415

The City of Largo Florida to Present First Annual Barbara Bush Citizen Patriot Award at 2017 Veterans Day Ceremony; Former U.S. Congressman Bob Clement (D-TN) will be Keynote Speaker

In honor of those who have served in the U.S. military, the City of Largo, Florida hosts an annual Veterans Day Ceremony at Largo Central Park and this year will present the first annual “Barbara Bush Citizen Patriot Award.” The award, named after former First Lady Barbara Bush, was created to honor Mrs. Bush's selfless work throughout her lifetime of service, including her work with the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy. She launched the foundation more than twenty-five years ago in effort to tackle illiteracy in adults and children though many innovative outreach programs. In addition, she along with the Bush family and senior staff, have donated their time and talents to supporting veterans, wounded warriors and their caregivers.

Largo's event planning committee, comprised of representatives from American Veterans Legion Post 119, the Korean War Veterans, the Disabled American Veterans and Serenity Gardens created the award which will be presented annually. It will recognize a citizen who, in the spirit of Barbara Bush, has tirelessly worked to help our nation’s heroes. The 2017 inaugural recipient is, Dava Guerin, an author, former president of her own communications firm, and advocate for wounded warriors and their families. She is also the co-author, of Unbreakable Bonds: The Mighty Moms and Wounded Warriors of Walter Reed, along with Kevin Ferris, and the pair’s newest book, Vets and Pets: Wounded Warriors and the Animals That Help Them Heal.

Vets and Pets, which was released on September 26, 2017 by Skyhorse Publishing, tells fifteen emotional and inspirational stories of the bonds between wounded warriors, veterans, and other service members and their service and companion animals. Unbreakable Bonds told the stories of mothers who spent years aiding the recovery of their children – U.S. soldiers and Marines- who have suffered severe injuries during the War on Terror. (President George H. W. Bush and Barbara Bush recently hosted the veterans from Vets and Pets at their summer home in Maine to mark the book's publication.)

At the 2017 Veterans Day event, the City will be hosting wounded warriors and veterans featured in Vets and Pets. “We hope the public will join the City of Largo in honoring our veterans and Dava Guerin with the first-ever Barbara Bush Citizen Patriot Award on November 11, 2017,” said Greg Brown, head of the City’s Park’s Division. “We thank Mrs. Bush for being part of this meaningful award, and look forward to recognizing American volunteers who have helped others in the spirit of Mrs. Bush.”

Congressman Clement, who also served in the U.S. Army and the Tennessee Army National Guard, will deliver the keynote address focusing on veterans and the importance of public service. He is also the author of the political memoir, "Presidents, Kings and Convicts: My Journey from the Tennessee Governor's Residence to the Halls of Congress." Clement is a life-long advocate of service, and was one of the few members of Congress who served both as a college president and a member of the military.

Coverage is invited. The authors will be on-hand to sign copies of their books. For more information, to schedule interviews, or to nominate a 2018 Barbara Bush Citizen Patriot Award nominee, call Greg Brown at the Parks Division at (727) 586-7415 or visit


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Dava Guerin