BERLIN – The community will honor the nation’s heroes with a Memorial Day ceremony at the Worcester County Veterans Memorial Monday.
On May 25, area residents are invited to recognize those who have served their country with an 11 a.m. ceremony at the Worcester County Veterans Memorial in Ocean Pines.
“This is a very special ceremony that honors those who have made the ultimate sacrifice,” said Marie Gilmore, president of the memorial’s board of directors. “It’s a respectful, solemn ceremony. People get a lot out of it.”
This year’s event, which marks the 10 year anniversary of the Worcester County Veterans Memorial, will feature guest speaker Major General James A. Adkins. Adkins recently retired after serving as the 28th Adjutant General of Maryland.
Monday’s ceremony will also honor Gold Star Mothers, local ex-POWs and female veterans. Patriotic music will be provided by the Delmarva Chorus, Frank Nanna and the WWIIunes, Todd Crosby and Randy Lee Ashcraft.
“People are very touched by this ceremony,” Gilmore said.
She expects Monday’s event to attract more than 2,500 people. While the Memorial Day ceremony has grown since its inception a decade ago, it’s always been popular with area residents.
“Even the first year was well-attended,” Gilmore said, “because this memorial was built by the people of the community. People feel very attached to it. It’s a place of solace and comfort.”
The American flag to be flown during Monday’s ceremony is a special one, Gilmore says, that’s only flown in Ocean Pines twice before. The flag, which originally flew over the American cemetery at Normandy, was flown the day the Veterans Memorial was dedicated in 2005 and again in 2014 at the Ocean Pines Yacht Club.
“That flag will be raised to full staff at noon by many of the men who first raised it on our dedication day,” Gilmore said.
After Monday’s ceremony, it will return to the Yacht Club where it will remain in a permanent display case.
The Memorial Day ceremony is expected to last one hour. Community members are asked to bring their own chairs. For more information visit www.opvets.com.