Each Ribbon; A Life in Service

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The tradition is 3 years old, and Samia Ahmad says she gets emotional every time.

"Thinking about everyone who's deployed," said Ahmad.  "Their family and friends who are also probably going through the same thing i had gone through a couple years back."

She spent the afternoon coloring her college campus yellow.  In the U.S., a yellow ribbon is a symbol of support for military forces.  Samia's boyfriend is in the army, and was deployed three years ago.  That same year, this tradition was born.

"My classmate and I had the idea of why not tie ribbons on trees on campus just for more of an awareness that UIS is a friendly military campus and that we're here to support anyone," Ahmad.

Dozens of students from the University of Illinois at Springfield volunteered their time lining the main roads of campus with the ribbons.

"The veterans give us so much on a daily basis," said senior, Shelby Bedford.  "Whether they're deployed or home, running back and forth to drill.  And it's really nice to just be able to get out and bring a large amount of people with me and see them all supporting them."

And even though Samia has graduated, she says she'll always come back for this.

"Coming back as an alumni, seeing so many students and groups and organizations out here helping.  It's just a great feeling to know the tradition is still going to continue one."

A touch of respect just in time for Veteran's Day.

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