Memorial services recognize heroes

Thursday, May 31, 2012
VFW Commander Ed Thompson, American Legion Vice-Commander Charles Crafton and American Legion Commander John Harmon salute the memorial wreath honoring the military men and women who have given their lives in service

The sacrifices and deeds of generations of Piggott and American soldiers were honored during a special Memorial Day tribute held Sunday at Piggott Cemetery. Families, friends and those who just wished to pay their respects gathered for the special service, finding refuge from the warm sun amidst the shade trees at the lovely Piggott Cemetery.

Shawn Parker opened the ceremony with a prayer for all men and women of service and their families. Parker also spoke on the importance of keeping the men and women who have served and continue to serve their country in the thoughts and prayers of all those for whom they serve.

"The key is to remember," Parker said. "The men and women who have fought and laid down their lives for our country did so for all of us. It's important we remember that not only on Memorial Day, but every day. We should never forget what they have done for each of us."

The ceremony concluded with the placement of the memorial wreath near the entrance of the cemetery by VFW Commander Ed Thompson, American Legion Vice-Commander Charles Crafton and American Legion Commander John Harmon. The three veterans saluted the wreath, joined in attention by the remainder of the crowd, as Piggott teenagers Chris Book and Anna Nettles performed Taps in memoriam.

Prior to the ceremony, area Boy Scouts, led by Tracy Gurley and David Gregory, dedicated their time in order to place over 600 American flags on the graves and markers of fallen soldiers at Piggott Cemetery. The flags caught the passing breeze throughout the service, adding a striking sea of red, white and blue to the picturesque surroundings.

The ceremony included a brief business meeting by the Piggott Cemetery Association. President Sharon Tillman gave a breakdown of the cemetery's current funds, noting the cemetery fund currently has $386,120.65 total in its checking account and CDs.

Rector Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 10480 held its annual Memorial Day service at Woodland Heights Cemetery in Rector.

Stephen Grey, veterans and military liason for the office of U.S. Senator John Boozman, was the guest speaker. Rector National Guardsmen conducted a military salute. A financial report was given by the Woodland Heights Cemetery Association.

Jill Wynn and Rector High School students placed flags earlier last week on the graves of all veterans buried at Woodland Heights Cemetery.

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