Dallas County to honor veterans on Monday

Published 12:24 am Sunday, May 24, 2009

On Monday, residents of Selma and Dallas County will have the opportunity to stop and honor those who died in military service through the ages.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars will host a local ceremony at Memorial Stadium in Selma at 11 a.m. Rayburn Hill, commander of VFW Post 3016 will be the master of ceremonies. Post 3016 will post colors. Other veterans and some civic organizations will place flowers on the memorial in front of the stadium. Charles Duckett will speak of the sacrifices given by service men and women of the U.S.

“This will be Charles’ first opportunity for us to hear him speak and see how he feels about the sacrifices that the veterans of the past have made, so that you and I have the freedom to gather here and hear him since his retirement,” said Rod Stone, adjutant for VFW Post 3016.

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Duckett’s son, Wesley, is a Marine and recently returned from Iraq.

“Most Americans have forgotten the true meaning of Memorial Day,” Stone said. “if you cannot attend, at least, around 11 a.m., take a short pause in whatever you may be doing and lower your head for a brief moment of silent prayer and say thanks to these passed heroes. You owe all your freedoms. Or perhaps listen to Taps and thank them for their sacrifices so that you may enjoy all your freedoms that they have died to give you.”

VFW Post 3016 will be present with Buddy Poppies. In 1922, the VFW became the first organization to nationally distribute for donations the poppies. The are made by disabled veterans in veterans hospitals. Money raised from the donations of poppies goes to help support widows and children of veterans who died in service.

Then, at 3 p.m., sirens will sound all over Dallas County and Selma for a minute of silence. Selma Mayor George Evans in cooperation with the Dallas County Commission have declared that minute from 3 to 3:01 p.m. as a moment of silence in memory of those who died preserving freedom.

Earlier this year, Evans proclaimed the event, which allows this area to participate in the National Moment of Remembrance. “It is important that we stop and remember those who gave their lives and to recognize those who continue to serve our nation here at home and in other countries as they preserve our freedom.”

When the sirens sound, traffic will stop and residents in their homes, schools or businesses are asked to stop for that moment and observe silence.

“Just one minute,” Evans said, ” is not too much to ask for what the men and women of the military give to us.”