Dozens of community members, waving flags along the sides of Main Street, watched a parade stream by Monday morning.
They bundled up against a cold wind to support an event meant to honor those who have served our country for Veterans Day. Along with Veterans from various service organizations, marching bands, Boy Scouts and more marched and drove through Granville.
The parade ended in Veterans Park, where a ceremony took place in recognition of those who gave the ultimate sacrifice and those who are still here today.
The event included a laying of the wreaths, various salutes, “Taps” and other songs, speeches and more.
“We join together to thank those who have served,” Mayor Brian LaRose said, explaining that more than 48 million Americans have served in the armed forces since 1776. “All veterans share a common bond—an unwavering belief in the cause of freedom.”
“The legacy of American veterans is a proud and honorable one. This tradition continues with the liberation of Afghanistan and Iraq,” he said. “Thank you for your sacrifices, for your sense of duty and for your service.”
Following the mayor’s speech, Granville Town Supervisor Matt Hicks said a few words.
“As we all know, freedom isn’t free. Our gathering is just one small spark in the flame that burns across the nation today and every day,” Hicks said, urging citizens to honor veterans not only by words but by service.
Sam Hall, the Washington County veterans coordinator, touched upon several subjects, from the vast number of female veterans to sobering statistics about suicide among those who return home.
“More than one a day—that’s how many have committed suicide in the last year,” he said, adding that America is losing more service members by their own hands than by the enemy.
“We love them, appreciate them and are grateful for their service. Perhaps the most significant is the battles America does not have to fight,” he said.
Butch Hurlburt, commander of the Granville VFW, also offered confidential help or direction to any veterans who are having trouble adjusting to civilian life. To contact Hurlburt call 361-0185.