DENVER — Ahead of Memorial Day, volunteers placed hundreds of American flags on the headstones at Fort Logan National Cemetery in Denver. The flags are meant to honor those who sacrificed everything in service to their country.
People of all ages took part in the event. The flags were placed one day before Fort Logan hosts a ceremony to honor the fallen on Memorial Day. That ceremony is open to the public and is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m.
9NEWS spoke with volunteers placing flags on Sunday to find out what the holiday means to them.
(Editor's note: Responses have been edited for context and clarity.)
Henry Jones Jr.
I’m here to pay my respects to Command Sergeant Major Joseph Annello. He was ordered the Silver Star, the Prisoner of War Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal among numerous awards. Very humble man who served in the Korean War, served after and was like a father figure to me. We wouldn’t be here, I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for the great men and women that served in our armed forces. They’re the ones that sacrificed everything.
Memorial Day means everything. This is hallowed ground to me. They gave us everything that we have and, for me, every day is Memorial Day. I cherish my freedom. I don’t take my freedom for granted and I love coming down here. It’s kind of like being with family.
I'm 11 years old. Well, I just turned 12. We came here to help support the veterans who are not with us anymore. My dad's friend died.
I'm proud because, well, they helped our nation be free. I would thank them very much for supporting our country.
All four of my grandparents are buried out here. This is just a really special place to us. It's great to see so many people here and to see the community rallying together.
Just knowing that it’s a part of our family history is something that’s really special to me. It’s something I really appreciate. I really appreciate all of the veterans and just knowing that there’s people out there that are willing to do that in order for all of us to have the freedoms we have is super special.
For me, every year it’s sort of a time to slow down and reflect and really think about your life and how special it is to just be able to have the freedom to make the choices that you want to make and to be thankful for that because those freedoms come from the sacrifice of other people that are willing to do that for you and, continuing into the present, they still are.
We’re part of Troop 2119, a boy scout troop out of Lakewood. We’re here to place flags at the graves of our veterans. I think it’s critical for our scouts as they’re going along their journey to see what others have done before them.
I think it makes you realize how small you are and how blessed you are to be here. I’m not American by birth, I’m American by determination and I’m very very honored to be here. All of the people that lay before us were the epitome of brave and loyal and trustworthy. No doubt about it.
I think Memorial Day is one of the most symbolic holidays that easily gets forgotten over a barbecue grill. It really should be the day that we take a moment and we pause and we give thanks to all those that gave everything for us.
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