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Shelby County Navy veteran awarded for 60 total years of service

30 years in the military and 30 years with the Shelby County Assessor of Property - John Bogan has had a life dedicated to service.

SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. — Retired Navy Commander John Bogan was honored Thursday with the Shelby County Veteran of the Year award by Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris. 30 years in the military and 30 years right here in Shelby County.

“My classifications were everything from confidential, secret, top secret, need to know and then some others that I will not mention that the president gets ahold of,” Bogan said.

Before working here at the Shelby County Assessor of Property, Bogan created a career in naval intelligence.

“A lot of the stuff that I was dealing with is kind of now, obsolete,” Bogan said.

Maybe so, but his time both in and out of uniform, never forgotten. Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris awarded him following his well decorated service in the navy.

“He’s well decorated, he’s well respected, he cares about his country and his community and he is willing to risk it all for that identity of this country that you can’t put a price on,” Mayor Harris said.

“Well, I was on aircraft carriers,” Bogan said. “Yes, I was on the Carl Vinson, people don’t really know what we are actually doing, that’s what we fought for is to retain the freedom of the United States and to keep it that way,” Bogan said.

He says he’s lived a full and meaningful life, but if he could have one wish, it’s to change the phrase thank you for your service.

“You see a military person either wearing a hat like I am or maybe a coat, what have you, is when you say thank you for your service,” Bogan said. “Change that and say thank you for my freedom.”

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