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A look back to Memorial Day

Memorial Day is on the final Monday of May. This year it comes on next Monday, May 25. For many years it was known as Decoration Day. It began as a day to remember the men who had given their lives to maintain the American Union during the Civil War. Actually, it was modeled after Confederate Memorial Day which began in Georgia in 1874. Unlike the federal Memorial Day, the Confederate day is not observed uniformly. Georgia designated April 26 while in Alabama it is the fourth Monday in April. Like most other Confederate-related days, this day has also receded vastly in importance. A few weeks ago Cullman County officials voted not to close on Confederate Memorial Day since many people with courthouse business are totally unaware of the existence of the day.

The main purpose of this very special day now is to honor all of those men and women in the Armed Services of the United States who have laid down their lives for their country in all wars. Many people will visit cemeteries on this solemn day and place flowers on the graves of these American heroes. Sometimes flags are placed on the graves of all of those patriots laid to rest in a particular cemetery who made the supreme sacrifice. Most commonly on Memorial Day the U.S. flag is flown at half-mast from dawn until noon. This is a federal holiday and most government offices are closed. Since Memorial Day falls between the end of the spring term and the beginning of summer classes, most schools would already be closed.

The list that follows identifies some of those Morgan County men and women who made the supreme sacrifice for the United States of America in armed conflicts since the middle of the twentieth century:

Cindy Bridges (Army) (Desert Storm)
Philip Childers (Army) (Vietnam)
Rodger Crow (Army) (Vietnam)
Floyd Crumton (Army) (Korea)
Billy Earp (Army) (Vietnam)
George Golden (Army) (Vietnam)
Claud Greene (Army) (Korea)
Thomas Gurley (Army) (Vietnam)

Gary Harris (Army) (Vietnam)
Paul Hendrix (Marine Corps) (Vietnam)
Thomas Hendrix (Marine Corps) (Vietnam)
Jon-Erik Loney (Army) (Iraqi Freedom)
Richard McGhee (Army) (Korea)
John McVay (Marine Corps) (Vietnam)
Carl Morgan (Marine Corps) (Vietnam)
Tommy Nicholas (Army) (Vietnam)

William Overton (Army) (Vietnam)
Roy Page (Army) (Vietnam)
Olen Parker (Marine Corps) (Korea)
Ralph Pattillo (Air Force) (Vietnam)
James Randall (Marine Corps) (Vietnam)
Joshua Rath (Army) (Afghanistan)
Jonathan Smith (Marine Corps) (Iraqi Freedom)

Arie Terry (Army) (Vietnam)
David Turner (Army) (Vietnam)
Floyd Voyles (Army) (Vietnam)
Morgan Weed (Army) (Vietnam)