Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day at Fort Logan National Cemetery

Temperatures from mid 50s to low 60s, heavily overcast.

Today I rode over to Fort Logan National Cemetery to honor those who've served and given their life for our country. The cemetery is on the grounds of Fort Logan, one of the last western forts of the US West. More info here on Ft. Logan: LINK

There were definitely more people there at the cemetery this Memorial Day. Unlike last year's Veteran's Day event, there were more US Flags lining the cemetery's roads and there were individual small US flags at each tombstone. I was glad to see such honors rendered to our veterans, I suspect that part of the reason for the extra effort this year was that Colorado Governor Ritter was a speaker at the event hosted by the VFW. Regardless, I was happy that extra efforts were made, as the tombstones had not had flags planted in front of each last year during Veteran's Day. LINK.

I parked Maria pretty far away from the area where the ceremonies would be held. I wanted to get away from the crowds near the main cemetery area and the slow moving lines of cars seeking parking spots.

That's Regis University way on the horizon

The Cemetery's Main Flagpole is visible above, the National Colors at half mast

The above pictures, I hope, will give you some idea of the numbers of fallen veterans and their family members who are interred here at Fort Logan. Fort Logan, as of fiscal year 2007, has 92,243 such servicemen and women who've been laid to rest in its 214 acres. Try to grasp in your minds eye, the further numbers of veterans nationwide laying at rest in our nation's other national cemeteries and public/private cemeteries as well.

At 1100am, the ceremonies and speeches kicked off. The speakers took turns praising our veterans of past wars and present conflicts. The Nation's colors were presented and patriotic songs were sung along with the National Anthem. Four F15 Fighter Jets roared overhead near the end of the ceremony, much to the crowd's delight.

The Color Guard, in position at the start of the ceremony

Near the end of the ceremony, rifle shots rang out in the customary military salute and Taps sounded from several locations around the crowd. Each horn player starting slightly behind the first, so the the melody echoed through the cemetery as we all reflected on the sacrifices of veterans, past and present.

One last view of the graves of our veterans

The Colors were flying this long weekend at my home, I hope the flew at yours as well to honor all veterans past and present for their service.

1 comment:

irondad said...

Amen. I'm too somber to say more. Thanks for the post!