The Town of Huntingdon remembered the men and women who have given their lives for America’s freedom’s in wars over time in a Memorial Day Ceremony at Thomas Park May 30.
In the absence of Mayor Dale Kelley, Vice Mayor Nina Smothers served as master of ceremonies.
She pointed out it was the 19th such ceremony that had been held there.
A fitting place for the event since it was the site of a train depot from which many Carroll County soldiers boarded the train for wartime destinations, she said.
“it is a time to remember those who died in military service to America, to honor our veterans and those currently serving in the Armed Forces and to celebrate our patriotism as a community and as a nation,” said the vice mayor.
Speaker for the ceremony Command Sergeant Major Renee Myers, acknowledged the brave soldiers of the United State Military who lost their lives in the service to their country.
“Today is a somber reminder of every service member who saluted the flag, served the flag, but ultimately went to the ground covered in our great flag.
She pointed out that to many people, Memorial Day will bring about thoughts of a fun three-day weekend – the kickoff of summer, the start of longer days, greener grass, barbecues, swimming and outdoor fun.
The meaning runs much deeper than that, she related.
“Somber as this day is, Memorial Day is also a celebration of life, a time when we mark and appreciate the heritage which has been left to us by our fallen,” she said.
On a local note, she mentioned that she was currently looking for any relative of William “Billy” Williams who was born March 26, 1919, He was killed in action during World War II on Sept. 19, 1944 when the plane he was flying was shot down over Eindhoven, Netherlands.
She also said Memorial Day is a day to celebrate freedom with fun things to do with family and friends.
However, she encouraged everyone, that at some point during the day, to take time out to honor the heroes that have been lost.
“It can be done in many ways,” she said. “Perhaps in a moment of silent reflection or prayer, a flag ceremony, a visit to a veteran’s cemetery or just a poppy worn on your shirt.”
She urged educating young people children about the very grave and serious circumstances for which this holiday exists.
In closing she reminded the audience what President Franklin Delano Rosevelt once said: “Those who have long enjoyed such privileges as we enjoy…forget in time that men died to win them.”
“This is what we must protect and preserve,” said Myers.
As the service concluded, she reminded the audience to remember that the National Moment Remembrance Act was set aside for 3 p.m. local time that day.
“So wherever you are, pause and realize that we are one community…joined in thought with all Americans in honoring those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for freedom.”
During the ceremony, Clarksburg Troop 276 Boy Scouts of America presented the colors followed by the singing of the National Anthem by Tera Townsend and the saying of the Pledge of Allegiance led by the vice mayor.
Veterans present, who had earlier been presented with a red carnation, were recognized by Smothers.
A salute to veterans was held with each one standing on the playing of their branch of services’ anthem.
The vice mayor remembered those who have served followed by the placement of the Memorial Wreath by Clarksburg Troop 276.
Garrett Brawner played “Taps” with Randy Crossett raising the flag.
Tera Townsend sang the national Anthem with Huntingdon Missionary Baptist Church ministerJames Keen saying the closing prayer.