By Rick Palsgrove
The Memorial Day ceremony in Groveport was again scaled back this year due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, however, the event maintained its traditional dignity and spirit.
The ceremony’s keynote speaker was Motts Military Museum Director Warren Motts, who brought the meaning of Memorial Day home by talking about its local connections.
Wars are fought on a large scale involving nations and thousands, sometimes millions, of military personnel. But each one of those soldiers, sailors, and airmen have a family and a hometown. Each one, and the sacrifice they made, is important.
As American flags softly fluttered above the many graves of local veterans in Groveport Cemetery, Motts said, “We must always remember the fallen.”
Motts mentioned Lima Company, a company of United States Marines operating out of the nearby Rickenbacker Air National Guard base. He said Lima Company lost 23 Marines and one U.S. Navy Corpsman in the Iraq War.
“We must remember all the men and women who served our country and never forget the price they paid for our freedoms,” said Motts.
Groveport Mayor Lance Westcamp also spoke and recognized the 12 local veterans whose images will appear on the “Veterans Banners” that will be placed on Main Street at various intersections from Memorial Day to Veterans Day.
“These are our hometown heroes,” said Westcamp of the Groveport community’s many veterans.
The 12 veterans who will appear on this year’s banners are: William Butsch, Richard Featherston, Brent Fridley, Anne Gillen, Mary Ellen Miller, Mayson Newman, Clifford Nutter, Paul Raver III, Robert Ruetsch, Riley Sedwick, Raymond Southall, Jr., and William Stoots.
Westcamp also stated that he hopes next year’s Memorial Day ceremony will be open to the public and return to normal with the traditional parade procession to Groveport Cemetery without COVID restrictions.