ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. (KMOX) – The sacrifices made by America’s fighting men and women, past and present, were honored during the annual Memorial Day ceremony at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery Monday morning.
“This historic national cemetery which began in 1826 is a national shrine that shows deep appreciation and respect of a grateful nation,” said director John Midkiff. “To those here today who served, we thank you for keeping America free. To those here today who are honoring loved ones, we wish you comfort and peace of mind.”
The day featured music both somber and strident, including a medley of the anthems for all of America’s military branches.
Delivering the day’s keynote speech was Lee J. Metcalf, Rear Admiral USNR (Ret.).
“No matter from what era or in what corner of the country or the globe you may have served, we carry with us a set of memories of people and experiences that are indelibly etched in our brain,” Metcalf said.
Other speakers included Congressman Russ Carnahan, St. Louis mayor Francis Slay, and St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley.
Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery is one of the nation’s oldest burial grounds for military veterans and their family members, with more than 188,000 graves spread over its 346 acres in south St. Louis County.
For Memorial Day every one of those headstones was marked by a small American flag, fluttering in the strong but welcome breeze.