Arborcrest holds 32nd annual Memorial Day Observance
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Arborcrest Memorial Park held its 32nd annual Memorial Day Observance on Sunday, providing the Ann Arbor area a reminder of the reason for the holiday weekend.
The ceremony began as three Boy Scout troops marched up to the podium to raise the flag while the estimated 100 people at the event stood for the Pledge of Allegiance.
A barbershop quartet sang the national anthem as the flag was lowered to half-mast in recognition of the lives lost defending our country.
Brian Marl, mayor of Saline, hosted the event. Congressman John D. Dingell, state Rep. David Rutledge, and Miss Washtenaw County Marissa Cowans spoke at the event.
Marl told the story of an Eastern Michigan University graduate who died while serving his country. His story is not unlike that of many other brave soldiers, but that doesn’t make his story any less special, Marl said. Marl spoke of the freedom that so many have died fighting for.
“There has never been in the history of the world a soldier more willing to sacrifice for the freedoms and liberties of complete strangers than that of the American soldier,” Marl said. “On this Memorial Day weekend and every day we should have the courage to stand with them.”
Each speaker emphasized Americans' freedom, which is owed to those who fought to defend it. Dingell expressed the importance in understanding why lives were lost.
“They did it for our freedom and for our liberty,” Dingell said. “They went also to protect the most wonderful democracy of mankind. Be proud of what they did.”
Rutledge echoed similar sentiments saying that Memorial Day is about freedom and hope. Keep the memories of those lost alive, he said.
The quartet performed renditions of ‘America the Beautiful’ and ‘My Country Tis of Thee’ as honor guards dressed in uniform marched out and stood at attention.
Boy Scouts performed the laying of the wreath ceremony and Marl made closing remarks, thanking veterans for their service and asking that the memory of those lost be honored this Memorial Day.
The honor guard gave a 21-gun salute followed by "Taps" played by a single trumpet to close the ceremony.
Chelsea Hoedl is an intern reporter for AnnArbor.com. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.