At the Richmond VAMC, patients, family members, volunteers and staff united in memorial and remembrance of America’s heroes. The ceremony which was held on the main stage of the south mall atrium, paid tribute and honored those men and women of the military who have lost their lives in defense of their country.
“We honor our fallen heroes at this commemoration, said Rear Admiral John G. Hekman, Ret Navy and keynote speaker. One of the more common quotes you hear around Memorial Day is that freedom is never free. And throughout American history, men and women have served in the U.S. military to help ensure America maintains its freedom.”
“We give thanks on Memorial Day that we live in a free nation and honor those who gave their lives”, said Charlie Brydie, a 20 year Veteran and primary caregiver to his 90 year old father, a WWII Veteran. “I’m happy my father can come to McGuire medical center and receive his care, and to me, it was worth the sacrifice.”
Following the keynote speaker, a wreath was placed in honor and memory of all Veterans. Music was played throughout the program by the John Marshall Alumni Band. Presentation of the Colors and the Retiring of the Colors was provided by The Memorial Rifles of American Legion Post 84.
In closing, program participants were reminded to remember the National Moment of Remembrance which encourages all Americans to pause wherever they are at 3pm on Memorial Day for a moment of silence to remember and honor those who died in service to the nation.