As the temperature plunged and the wind kicked up Monday morning, a Veterans Day observance in Brownwood took place in a much warmer environment: the Veterans of Foreign Wars Meeting Hall.

With the blast of winter weather in the forecast, organizers decided last week to move the observance inside rather than holding it at the Central Texas Veterans Memorial.

After a patriotic rendition from the Early Elementary School Fifth Grade Choir, Army National Guard Lt. Col. Jamie Creek, who is the commander of the Camp Bowie Training Center, spoke briefly about his recent deployment to Afghanistan.

Creek also talked about the importance of community support for a military installation.

“I appreciate the support of this community. It’s nothing short of amazing,” Creek said. “When soldiers come here from across the state, they’re amazed at the hospitality.”

Creek then prepared to give away several MRE (Meals Ready to Eat) packages.

“What good is a ceremony if we don’t have door prizes?” Creek asked.

Creek then said, “if you’re a veteran in this room and you’re 105 years or older, raise your hand.”

That could only mean one person in the room, and Army veteran Bill Pierson — who recently celebrated his 105th birthday — raised his hand and stood to accept the MRE from Creek.

Creek handed out other MREs to audience members who could answer questions Creek posed about the history of Veterans Day.