VFW Post Commander Dan Eaton, US Navy, ret., brought attention to the number of flags denoting service that marked the gravestones of Greenwood and other places of rest throughout the county.
“It’s humbling,” Eaton said, “to see how many in our county have served.”
US Army Lt. Colonel Mike Thomas, ret., spoke to the crowd about his recent visit to wash the gravestones of his father, his grandparents, and an uncle he never knew, who died while training to be a fighter pilot in the Korean War. While there he took time to look at the memorials hanging in the mausoleum with the names of local men who died while serving in WWI and WWII.
“I am too young,” he said, “to have known any of the men listed on those bronze plaques. But having served in my own war, I know these men were most likely young and bright and good. Men who deserved a future far longer than what they got.
“When you lose a loved one,” he continued, “or soldier under your command in war, you come to know with brutal clarity that a country’s treasure is in its young men and women, and their loss is terrible beyond measure because it is irreparable.”
Eaton presented the new memorial, which was recently completed, and the veterans quietly saluted a lowered flag. The service ended with a quiet prayer, and all were invited to enjoy refreshments.