Honoring those who made the ultimate sacrifice


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By Reggie Ponder

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Memorial Day is approaching once again.

It’s appropriate to have a day set aside to remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.

In a sense every day should be Memorial Day, if by that we mean that we should never lose sight of the sacrifices so many have made in defending our nation.

We could say the same about nearly any important holiday: If Christmas means celebrating that God sent us his Son, we should never not do that; if thanksgiving means being grateful for the ways God has blessed us, we should do that continually.

But that doesn’t mean we don’t make it a point to observe Christmas Day (and Christmas Eve and so on — you know how it goes) and Thanksgiving and Easter and Independence Day.

So it’s much the same with Memorial Day. While we should always remember and be thankful for those who have given their lives in service to our country, it’s enormously right — and an honor and privilege — to observe a specific day for that high purpose.

That day this year is Monday, May 28.

In Elizabeth City there will be a Memorial Day ceremony at 1 p.m. at Westlawn Cemetery, located at 1909 W. Main Street. The ceremony is hosted by the Chief Petty Officers Association and and Fleet Reserve Association Branch 293.

Following the ceremony there will be hot dogs and refreshments at the Chief Petty Officers Association Club. The CPOA Club also will be the rain location for the event. The club is located at 514 Cardwell Street.

Maj. Charles J. Thompson of the U.S. Army will speak at the ceremony. Also making remarks will be Cecil Perry, chairman of the Pasquotank County Board of Commissioners.

A Battle Cross will be presented by the Post 6060 of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. The VFW also will present “Taps” as a solemn tribute to the fallen.

In neighboring Perquimans County, Carroll Bundy, who is a retired U.S. Army National Guardsman and the pastor of New Hope United Methodist Church, will be the speaker for the Memorial Day observance  at 111 W. Academy Street in Hertford at 11 a.m.

Most of us can think of someone close — a family member, good friend from high school or someone else near and dear — who gave their life in service to our country.

All of us, though, regardless of our political affiliation, ethnic background, religious beliefs or anything else that contributes to our uniqueness, share a common debt of remembrance and gratitude.

Reggie Ponder is a staff writer for The Daily Advance.