American Legion Memorial Day Celebration

By: Ryan Dearbone
By: Ryan Dearbone

Like they do every year, veterans and their families gather at the American Legion to honor America and those who have fought to protect it.

"Remembering our fallen comrades from all the wars clear on back to the Revolutionary War and the wars since that have taken place," says Vietnam veteran James Thomas.

"Its a time to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country and for us," says Donny Brown, another Vietnam veteran.

The brotherhood in the room between veterans of different wars was immediately evident.

Military veteran Alan Freeland put it this way.

"Its just a brotherhood and you feel it. Even though I'm 30 years older than those serving today, I feel like a brother to them."

The service which featured a speech from former Miss America Heather French Henry, brought out the emotions in many of the veterans.

"Mostly when I was listening to to Heather French, I have to admit I got a bit emotional," says Freeland.

"Its almost a bad feeling cause it brings up a lot of things I try to forget about during the year. But at the same time it brings back feelings that we need to have," admits Brown.

"Just to have those memories of all those soldiers that gave
Their lives for this country," says Thomas.

While Monday's ceremony was a yearly event, these veterans believe that those who died fighting for America should never be forgotten.

Its extremely important that everybody remembers the veterans. Those that made the ultimate sacrifice and those that didn't. They're the ones that's given us our freedom," notes Brown.

Monday's ceremony brought out more than 400 veterans and their families as well as local and state elected officials.

In honor of those lost in battle, Taps was played and a 21 Gun salute was given.

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