New Castle News

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May 27, 2014

Photo Gallery, Story: Memorial Day service at courthouse

NEW CASTLE — Past and present veterans gathered alongside community members on Monday morning for the annual Lawrence County Veterans Council Memorial Day Service.

Citizens lined the street for the service, which began at 10 a.m. near the monument below the Lawrence County Courthouse.

Along with performances from the New Castle High School Marching Band and patriot sing-alongs, was a special presentation from West Pittsburg retired Navy Captain Mary Ann Elsesser.

Serving more than 30 years in various positions including staff nurse and director of nursing services, Elsesser reminded attendees the true reason for the day of observance.

“This is a day to remember the men and women who died for us,” Elsesser said. “The reason we are able to gather here freely today and the reason we have freedom is because of them and we must remember them.”

Members of the New Castle Area Veterans Honor Guard, along with veterans from wars that dated as far back as World War II received recognition and commendation, taking their turn to salute the flag.

Also recognizing the day were members of New Castle Boy Scout Troop 762 and the women’s auxiliary club.

While others in the community may have spent the day elsewhere Elsesser commended those who began the morning remembering.

“Nowadays people are too busy to stop and remember,” Elsesser said. “They spend the day shopping or at a ball game. But we remember and in death these veterans will always be remembered in our hearts. Those veterans left behind friends and family for a place they never knew before. It took dedication and commitment, and we’ll never truly know the extent of their experience.”

Members of the Veteran Council also took time to recognize former member Tom Lane, a man they hailed as an active member in the council, who passed away earlier this year.

“Tom was the sole person who organized this event every year,” Elsesser said. “We want to honor him. It’s taken all of us to replace him.”

Chuck Harvey, veterans’ council commander also remarked on the big, big part Lane played in the event and presented his widow with a memorial plaque.

As the service concluded a mini-parade began from Kennedy Square and Elsesser gave one final remark to those celebrating the holiday.

“When you enjoy your hot dog or hamburger pause and take a moment to remember those who died for us, so that we could enjoy this beautiful holiday in peace,” Elsesser said.

(To view a photo gallery, CLICK HERE.)

 

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