PEORIA, IL. – In honor of Memorial Day commemorations are taking place all over Central Illinois. The American Mausoleum held a special ceremony to honor veterans.
“Our dead will never be forgotten. We have honored them. It’s a great country. God bless America.”
Guest speaker David Barker, who was also in the military, said specially this weekend people need to do find their own way to honor veterans.
“If it’s standing at a graveside quietly weeping, that’s fine. If it’s a family gathering, singing the national anthem, that’s fine too. Whatever way it is that is right to you and your family, please do it, it’s the weekend to do it,” said Barker.
For others like George Hickman, this building holds a special place because his parents and daughter are buried there. But this time, he had one more reason to go.
“I couldn’t serve but I know a lot of people do, a lot of my friends have. I want to support them and all the veterans,” said Hickman.
During Barker’s time serving in Iraq, soldiers talked about how they would want people to commemorate Memorial Day if they didn’t make it. They said they wanted people to enjoy a steak and a beer on their behalf.
“Enjoy the freedoms that you have and remember why you have them and how you got them,” said Barker.