by Sandy Wyman
The day of November 11 is special to America as it denotes Veterans Day, a special day set aside to come together to honor all those who have serve and continue to serve this great country with valor, bravery and dedication to the cause of freedom.
On this auspiciousday at the Gouverneur Village Park, a solemn and meaningful ceremony was held to remember all that has been sacrificed in the quest of freedom.
Although the day dawned cold with a snowflake or two in the air, Master of Ceremonies Michael Webster, US Navy (Ret.) and Past Commander of VFW Post 6338 stated in opening remarks that this day was nothing in comparison to the “boys” of World War I who spent time lasting years in the trenches of combat with no shelter from the war, weather or comfort.
“Be grateful, today and always remember those who answered the call of duty.”
After the invocation delivered by VFW Post Auxiliary Chaplain Marlene Webster, the Pledge of Allegiance followed with VFW Post Commander Dominick Simione and American Legion Commander Gloria Youngs at the podium.
Presentation of wreaths by VFW Post Commander Simione and American Legion Commander Weldon were followed by presentation of flowers at the Memorial Arch by VFW Auxiliary President Melissa Simione and American Legion Ladies Auxiliary President Gloria Youngs.
A red rose being placed by DAR descendent Lynda Andrews followed a solemn presentation of a single yellow rose by Gold Star Mother Nancy Cappellino.
A wreath of commemoration was placed at the arch by Sons of the American Legion member Steve Cline followed by a wreath fromGouverneur students by Nancy Cappellino.
The bagpipes of Jeff Forsythe sang with the harmony of “Amazing Grace,” that we are all fortunate to have as Americans.
Gouverneur Mayor Ron McDougall was guest speaker.
“Thank you for this honor at a very special and meaningful occasion in American history.
“Today as we stand here our President is presenting a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown in Washington.
“Our war calendar in this country continues today and this observance comes once again to a young nation as far as world history is concerned.
“I do believe that we have one of the most cherished memories of keeping our veterans in thoughts and prayer of gratitude because we are a free country.
“Say what you will, we are a free country and remembering these sacrifices for home and hearth keeps democracy alive and well.
“This week we had free and democratic elections and no matter whom you voted for, we have the freedom to vote! Who do we thank for this…our veterans!
“Today, we are a country at war and with all volunteer military, we still remain strong and true to the cause of freedom.
We are the greatest country in the world and it has come with sacrifices beyond belief, however, the United States of America has been, is and will continue to be a great country and I believe that the best days are yet to come.
“My fellow citizens, when you see a soldier, stop and say thank you for your service.
“God bless our military, past, present and future and all of you gathered here today to show honor to America.”
Sergeant at Arms Karl Beck and the Honor Guard honored America with the traditional 21gun salute.
GHS student Jenneca Cook rendered “Taps” and American Legion’s Gloria Youngs presented the benediction.
In closing remarks, Master of Ceremonies Webster stated that he is most proud to be associated with this community because of the patriotism that continues to be shown.
A luncheon was served after the ceremony at the VFW.
by Sandy Wyman