CRESTVIEW — Memorial services can meaningfully connect Americans to U.S. soldiers, Crestview Mayor David Cadle said.
And services in small towns — like the Disabled American Veterans Auxiliary Crestview Unit 57's Memorial Day observance — call to mind our service members' sacrifice, he said.
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More than 500 small American flags quivering in the breeze Monday morning at Liveoak Park Memorial Cemetery marked headstones of men and women who died in combat.
Annually reflecting on those who died in service is important, Cadle said.
“I just appreciate the people of this community for not letting this tradition die, because we owe those soldiers our honor and our gratitude," he said.
During the ceremony, individuals walked across the cemetery, placing wreaths to honor fallen soldiers.
Greg and Cindi Smith presented a wreath with other Okaloosa Republican Precinct Captains representatives and their 9-year-old granddaughter, Taylor.
Current generations across the country have lost the reason behind Memorial Day, Greg Smith,retired Air Force and current Civil Service, said.
But that's not the case in Okaloosa County, which has a dense military population, Cadle said.
“When I spoke ... about connecting the American people to the American soldier, I’m really not directing that at this community ...
"This community is connected to American soldiers."