Today is all about honoring those who paid the ultimate sacrifice protecting our freedoms.
Thousands of North Dakotans did just that this afternoon at the Veterans Memorial Cemetery.
Just as the Memorial Day ceremony began Monday afternoon, a little surprise from mother nature came pouring down, but it didn’t seem to phase anyone.
“Oh this is really something that they were so dedicated that they stayed through the rain. It’s really amazing how dedicated people are,” said Arlington Helm from McClusky, North Dakota.
The theme for this year’s event was “The Great War: 100 years Remembered”. It commemorates 100 years since the end of World War I – known as the war to end all wars.
Governor Doug Burgum said, “The United States has played an important role in this world not only in terms of building a great country and the freedoms that we have here that others don’t have, but we’ve fought for freedoms around the world.”
“I’m wearing this just in commemoration and remembrance of a generation that no longer has a face, no longer has a voice. And just to make sure that people that died who fought 100 years ago are not forgotten,” said Casey Beck with the World War I Centennial Commission.
Representatives from all branches of service and every war since World War 2 were present at the ceremony. And out of the thousands there, nearly every single person stayed throughout the rain.
Major General Al Dorhmann added, “You can say we support our service members, you can say that you honor their sacrifice, but showing up for an event like this when the weather is not great, that’s showing that you actually care about the service and sacrifice.”
After the ceremony concluded, 1,000 Meyer spruce seedlings were given to attendees.It’s to honor the thousands of “Liberty Trees” planted after the conclusion of World War I.