Memorial Day ceremonies somber, touching

Published 11:00 pm Friday, May 24, 2013

This weekend is Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial start of summer and the vacation season. The three-day break brings a welcome end to the hustle and bustle of the end-of-school year pace for many, a respite after graduation for some, and a much-needed breather for grown-ups in the working world.

But amid all the cookouts and kicking back, we would do well to remember the real reason for this three-day weekend: Memorial Day on Monday. The holiday derived from Decoration Day, a simple day set aside to decorate the graves of fallen soldiers as an honor to the men and women who gave their lives in service to the country. Throughout the years, it has grown into much more, but remains a lasting tribute to those soldiers and all generations who paid the ultimate price.

On Monday, ceremonies at 11 a.m. Bicentennial Park in Troy; at 9 a.m. in Brundidge; and at 11 a.m. in Elamville will mark the day in fitting tribute. From the simple laying of a memorial wreath and short ceremoney by VFW Post 7055 members in Brundidge to the memorial service that includes guest speakers and the reading of the names of Pike Countians who lost their lives in combat during the American Legion Post 70 ceremony at Bicentennial Park in Troy, the events are somber and touching. In Elamville, a Korean prisoner of war will share his story, as the VFW POst 7055 members gather at the Veterans Monument for a ceremony followed by lunch.

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We encourage you, and your family, to set aside time on Monday to take part in one of these Memorial Day events. A few minutes spent in appreciation of those whose lives were given in service is the least we can offer in thanks and gratitude.