Published: Tue, May 30, 2017
National | By Rosalie Gross

Fallen heroes remembered in Phoenix on Memorial Day


A veteran salutes as the Clearwater High School JROTC presents the colors at the 2017 Bay Pines National Cemetery Memorial Day ceremony.

Marcelle Bridgeman is a mother of a man in the Army Reserves and she says his safe return home is cause to show support for those who were not as lucky.

If you would like to visit the cemetery, it is located at 14 Veterans Way.

A flag marked each grave of a soldier, sailor or marine. Frank Ziemkiewicz gave the benediction and remembrance the fallen, and a wreath was laid by 2015 veteran of the year, Jim Vejar and Lady's Auxiliary president for American Legion Post 135, Charlotte Fordham. He served in the Navy 27 and a half years.

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"Today we remember the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice in serving".

Vietnam veteran Bob Brown said having the ceremony inside this year was different but still important. His daughter Debbie Mullins has three sons now in the armed forces.

"I've been to eight or 10 Memorial Day ceremonies here over the past few years, and I can say that the GVMC puts on a very attractive program and consistently does a nice job of honoring and remembering our veterans". There's not a doubt about that. "They left these shores they went to those shores just like the ones that are doing today to fight the good fight there so that it doesn't come to our home", Whitehead said during his speech.

Leading up to special events, such as Memorial Day, service organizations and other volunteers decorate every tombstone with a small US flag, with the banners removed the following week and stored until the next year.

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