|WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA CEREMONY IS SATURDAY IN GRANTSVILLE|
FLASHBACK By Bob Weaver
In 2014, Wreaths Across America and a national network of volunteers laid over 700,000 memorial wreaths at 1,000 locations in the United States and beyond.
Saturday, the Calhoun squadron of Civil Air Patrol continued the effort in locally in Calhoun County, which includes Arlington National Cemetery, the Pearl Harbor Memorial, Bunker Hill, Valley Forge and the sites of the 9/11 tragedy.
The wreaths were placed at the graves of veterans around the county following a ceremony at the Calhoun courthouse.
Civil Air Patrol squadron commander Lou Craddock (right) a decorated veteran himself, said "These Christmas wreaths we are placing on graves today is to honor and remember them."
Craddock spoke about the importance of remembering our fallen heroes, honoring those who serve, and teaching our children about the sacrifices made by veterans and their families to preserve our freedoms.
During Saturdays ceremony, while music was played for each branch of service, veterans placed a wreath at the Veteran's Memorial on the courthouse lawn.
James Haught, writing for the Hur Herald, reminded us of the several thousand men and women who have served this nation from the backwood hills and hollows of Calhoun County.
"The men and women from this area were heroes," Haught wrote, with 1,700 in World War II.
That war alone, 52 Calhouners gave their lives so that the world would be free of people like Hitler, Mussolini and Tojo.
One-hundred-forty received Purple Hearts, many becoming prisoners of war.
Four hundred and forty five received Bronze Stars.
Thirteen Calhoun men won the next highest metal, the Silver Star.
Three won Distinguish Flying Crosses and Bernard P. Bell won the Congressional Medal of Honor.
That was in World War II alone.
Calhouners made a name for themselves wherever they served, in whatever war, from World War I to Iraq and Afghanistan.