Tri-Valley veterans gather for Memorial Day observance
By Robert Wheary, Staff Writer • firstname.lastname@example.org
HEGINS —With American flags flying and a quiet respect among the crowd, many gathered to remember those that paid the ultimate price in defense of their country.
Valley View American Legion Post 575 and Chapter 103 of the Disabled American Veterans hosted their annual Memorial Day Observance on Sunday, May 27 at Friedens Cemetery, Hegins.
Herbert Borchert, the master of ceremonies for the program, had to perform several other duties at the event, as he also had to give the invocation and benediction in the absence of the preacher and to give a few remarks after the scheduled guest speaker, Capt. Jennifer Renninger was absent at the start of the ceremony.
Borchert told the story about how he met up with five friends of his during a chance meeting in Hong Kong before the men were scheduled to be deployed to Vietnam.
“We got together for one last drink, and now I’m the last survivor of that group,” Borchert said. “After that, I knew that I had a responsibility for ceremonies like this, to pass along such knowledge like this for future generations.”
Borchert said that the biggest disappointment he has is that he finds that there are not many people that have respect for the laws of the country, and the freedoms some of those laws give us — freedoms that he and other veterans and those lost in combat fought and died for.
“If people don’t have respect for the law, then all the sacrifices made are for naught,” Borchert said. “As you leave here today, I challenge you all to resolve to serve God and country like I did and so many before did many years ago.”
The ceremony featured a placement of a memorial wreath on a veterans monument at the ceremony, the reading of the names of the deceased veterans and several patriotic musical selections, ending with a rifle volley and the playing of “Taps.”
Inside the observance’s program, the veterans wrote another special message for the public to ponder.
“Your presence and participation demonstrate patriotism and the highest ideals of Americanism. Enjoy the Memorial Day Holiday, but do not forget the men and women of our Armed Services who have given their lives for the protection of our Nation. Please honor those who have served and are now serving.