“He taught me the love of country and the importance of honor, courage and commitment,” said United States (U.S.) Marine Corps Lieutenant General Jim Laster of his father, U.S. Navy Veteran Donnor Laster. “He’s the one that talked me into joining the Marine Corps.”

Lt. Gen. Laster made the roughly 12-hour drive from Washington, D.C., where he serves as the director of the Marine Corps Staff in the Pentagon to spend time with his father and attend a Haven Hospice Pinning Ceremony to honor his father’s service.

Donnor enlisted in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War as a pharmacist. He ran the pharmacy of a NATO hospital in Turkey and then returned to the U.S. to run the pharmacy at the Bethesda Naval Hospital in Bethesda, Maryland. Donnor Served for four years before relocating to Dallas, Texas, where he went into private practice as a pharmacist.

“I think it’s absolutely wonderful that Haven Hospice honors veterans like this,” said Lt. Gen. Laster. “I think it’s critical that we continue to educate the next generation about what - veterans have done for this nation. I think a lot of that has gotten lost.”

The Haven Hospice Pinning Ceremony for veteran patients includes a veteran pin, a thank you card signed by the staff and a certificate of appreciation from Haven Hospice which are all presented by volunteer veterans.  The presentation ends with a salute to honor the veteran’s service.