DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) - The final Monday in May each year is a day we set aside to honor the men and women who have given their lives in defense of our country.
A growing tradition in Decatur each year is for several hundred people to gather at Roselawn Cemetery to observe this Memorial Day.
"Well this, this Memorial Day is to celebrate the people who died for our country, and the reason we can be our here is because of their sacrifice," says retired sailor Donald Curbow.
This Memorial Day observance is a celebration of gratitude to honor those who paid the ultimate price for freedom.
"It's a celebration of the freedoms that we have, and then it's to honor those that sacrificed to give us those freedoms," says State Representative Terri Collins.
Featured speaker Lt. Gen. John Bradley, USAF, told the audience,"For most of us, this is a day about family. There's hardly a family in America that hasn't been touched by war. Over the course of our nation's history, 1,010,728 men and woman have given their lives during wars in service to our country."
"I think there have never been more beautiful words written about this than this quote from a letter of condolence written by President Abraham Lincoln to a mother. He said, I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom," Bradley said.
Congressman Mo Brooks was among those at the Decatur ceremony who helped read the names of Morgan County veterans who have died over the past 12 months.