Groveport embraces Memorial Day in spite of pandemic


By Rick Palsgrove
Southeast Editor

Messenger photos by Rick Palsgrove
The traditional Memorial Day ceremony in the Groveport Cemetery on May 25 was scaled back this year due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The ceremony followed social distancing rules and the public was discouraged from attending so no crowd was present. However, the city of Groveport video recorded the ceremony and shared it on the city’s social media page online.

It was different, yet noble.

The annual Memorial Day ceremony in the Groveport Cemetery was smaller this year.

Silence embodied the hallowed grounds as only a handful of people were present because of the hovering spector of the coronavirus pandemic. But this viral scourge could not stop this remembrance.

The limited nature of the ceremony meant that no murmur of a gathering crowd was heard. No patriotic music was performed by the absent marching band. No parade of young flower bearers graced the cemetery. No crack of a 21-gun salute.

Motts Military Museum Director Warren Motts was the guest speaker at the ceremony.

What was ever present was the silence of the flag decorated graves of the soldiers resting here. The silence of the flower covered graves of generations buried here.

The only sounds were a soft breeze rustling the leaves, the songs of the birds in the trees, and the solemn voices of the few gathered here representing the community to pay respects to and honor those valiant ones from wars gone by resting here.

John Kershner playing “Taps” at the end of the ceremony.

“We must say, ‘Thank you,’ to all those who paid the ultimate price,” said the ceremony’s speaker Motts Military Museum Director Warren Motts. “We must never forget our fallen.”

Still, the noble silence wafted through the cemetery, broken only by the sound of “Taps” being played at the ceremony’s close. As the last note of that forlorn tune faded, the few gathered here slowly walked away.

Looking up, the blue sky was dotted with clouds. The warmth of the late May sun was felt on one’s skin. Nearby and throughout the town, glorious peonies bloom in the yards.

Flags decorated the graves of military veterans in the Groveport Cemetery.

It is a time to remember that those who rest in the more than 200-year-old Groveport Cemetery once were like us – laughing, loving, living – giving their all every day to better their community and country.

Always remember.


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