CHARLOTTE—One of the first speakers of the day at the convention was Kyle White, a Charlotte resident and recent Medal of honor Recipient, who addressed the crowd on the importance of giving back.

President Obama gave the retired Army Sergeant one of the nation’s highest military honors in May for his heroism during a four hour fight while he was deployed in Afghanistan.

White told the crowd that their service does not end when the uniform comes off.

He said he has chosen to dedicate his life to reducing the stigma surrounding post traumatic stress disorder.. his goal is to encourage veterans to seek help for their mental health… but white told veterans there are plenty of different ways to give back.

“Whether your service is working with blood donor programs, volunteering to cleanup the aftermath of natural disasters, working with the USO and Special Olympics, working on adult mentor programs, building houses with habitat for Humanity, or standing in front of people to say it is OK for service members to say they need help. Service is what defines us,” said White.

Sergeant White also handed out several service awards at the event.