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Fallen heroes honored during Memorial Day ceremonies in Westchester and Rockland counties

On the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, there were events and memorials across Westchester and Rockland counties to commemorate fallen Americans.

News 12 Staff

May 26, 2024, 3:34 PM

Updated 27 days ago

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In Rockland, the clear yet solemn sound of taps echoed from a trumpet at Gary Onderdonk Veterans Memorial Cemetery, setting the tone for a heartfelt Memorial Day ceremony honoring hometown heroes forever lost.
Veteran Jeremy E. Honey, who helps organize this yearly remembrance, finds the day very personal.
"It's a very solemn day for me," he shared.
Honey, reflecting on his experiences, stated, "There's a number of people I remember from Vietnam and Cambodia. But basically, my job is to commemorate all of them, and that's what I do."
Warren Brandt, a Korean War veteran, emphasized the importance of these memorials in reminding people of the true meaning behind Memorial Day.
"Some people think today that it's more important to have hamburgers and hotdogs, but it's not," Brandt said.
In Westchester, the sacrifices were also remembered. At St. Patrick's Cemetery, American flags marked the graves of veterans while two special memorials commemorated seven individuals who gave their lives for the country. Sean Murray, Commander of American Legion Post 1030, highlighted the significance of this tribute.
"Today, we are giving voices to those who no longer have voices," he said.
The seven individuals' names are forever memorialized in the etched stone of a monument. Their photos now also hang on poles just outside the cemetery, thanks to the efforts of the cemetery, honoring and remembering Verplank's hometown heroes.
"These seven people who lost their lives in defense of our nation are right here from Verplank. Verplank is a very small community and back then they had less than 1,000 people so that many people who not only served but lost their life if significant for our community," explained Murray.


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