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Hartselle Enquirer

Veterans honored

Priceville Police Chief Billy Peebles escorts a Blue Star Mother while she places a wreath at a monument in the Morgan County Veterans Memorial Park November 11. | Clif Knight
Priceville Police Chief Billy Peebles escorts a Blue Star Mother while she places a wreath at a monument in the Morgan County Veterans Memorial Park November 11. | Clif Knight

Clif Knight

Hartselle Enquirer

 

Hundreds of American patriots waved flags and applauded for veterans as they passed in review at Priceville’s annual Veterans Day Parade and assembled under the pavilion at the Morgan County Veterans Memorial Park for a memorial service November 11.

Ten World War II veterans participated in the events. They served as parade grand marshals and received special recognition at the memorial service.

The parade had 55 entries and stretched for more than a mile on North Bethel Road. It was led by 101 cadets from JROTC units representing Priceville and Brewer High Schools. The parade also featured Priceville High School’s marching band and floats sponsored by several of Morgan County’s veterans organizations.

A large contingent of parade viewers stood on both sides of the parade route and waved flags as the parade passed. At the same time, children focused on scooping of pieces of candy thrown by people in the parade.

Following the parade, an estimated 2,000 people assembled in the memorial park to pay tribute to veterans.

Program highlights included an empty chair ceremony conducted by Brewer JROTC cadets, patriotic music played by the Priceville High School band and the laying of wreaths at monuments representing the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard.

Robert Train, commander of American Legion Post 52, welcomed veterans and guests and served as master of ceremonies.

Becky Burney, chaplain, American Legion Post 15, gave the invocation and Priceville JROTC s color guard presented and posted the colors.

M/Sgt. Donna Johnson entertained the audience by singing the “National Anthem” and “God Bless America.”

Priceville Mayor Pro-Tem Tommy Perry led the Pledge of Allegiance, a Veterans Day overview was given by Daniel Copeland of the Marine Corps League and Col. George Kunkel (Ret.), Sr. Vice President of VFW Post 4190, read the presidential proclamation designating the observance of Veterans Day.

CW3 Roger Graves (Ret.), commander of American Legion Post 4190, was joined by Priceville’s High School’s band in recognizing veterans from all five branches of the Armed Forces.  Veterans stood to be recognized as the band played each branch’s battle hymn.

Greg Screws, news anchor for WHNT-TV, recognized the World War II veterans in attendance, Sheila Nelson of the Blue Star Mothers of Alabama, recognized the participating organizations and Theresa Groves of the American Legion Riders, recognized Gold Star Mothers.

Gold Star Mothers, escorted by Priceville police officers, laid wreaths at the bases of monuments in the memorial park.

The American Legion Honor Guard presented a 21-gun salute and the Rev. Jack Redfearn, assistant Chaplin of the Marine Corps League, gave the benediction.

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