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A new place and time are set for the area ceremony to remember and honor those who gave their lives for our country through military service.

On Monday, May 27, the annual Memorial Day Commemoration will be held at the downtown Huntsville-Madison County Veterans Memorial at 1 p.m.

“Historically, we’ve been at Maple Hill Cemetery but we are changing the place and the time this year. Instead of a morning ceremony, it will be in the afternoon,” said Max Bennett, of the Association of the United States Army and coordinator of the event.

This year’s guest speaker will be Gen. Gus Perna, commanding general, Army Materiel Command.

“Taking an hour to remember someone who did something for me that I take for granted shouldn’t be too much,” he said. “If a four-star general can be there, each one of us should be there.” 

Bennett said the ceremony will include music, including a bugler for Taps.

“The entire event will be about an hour long,” Bennett said. “We ask everyone to come out, bring a lawn chair, water, and dress casual” but appropriate for the occasion.

The morning will be full of people spending several hours at the annual Cotton Row Run, which also honors service members. People don’t “blink an eye” at spending that much time doing something fun, he added.

“This is a time to remember that Memorial Day is about more than hot dogs and hamburgers on the grill,” Bennett said. “The true spirit of the day is to remember those who gave the ultimate sacrifice so that we can enjoy days with hot dogs and hamburgers.”

For those who can’t be there, Bennett said he hopes that everyone find some way to remember our country’s fallen service members, whether it be at a cemetery, church or a silent moment to reflect on the sacrifices of our country’s brave warriors.

Bennett said of the three holidays designated to honor service members, sometimes people get confused of the true meaning behind each on them.

“All three are distinct in tone and tenor,” Bennett said. “Memorial Day is for those who died in service from the beginning of our country. Veterans Day is for those who have served … and Armed Forces Day is for those who are currently serving.”

For more information contact Bennett at 682-6522 or maxbennett64@gmail.com.

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