JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - One by one, Hinds County Supervisors presented wreaths to be laid by each of the five sections of the Memorial at the courthouse. The sections represent the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard.
The formal ceremony was the first of its kind for Hinds supervisors, who got the idea from WLBT news director Dennis Smith. "I know how Dennis Smith feels at Channel 3. He is 100% behind every veteran who ever put on a uniform," said District 1 Supervisor Robert Graham.
The ceremony brought Gretchen Parker to tears. Her great uncle, Navy seaman Robert Moody, died aboard the U.S.S. Arizona at Pearl Harbor. His name is on the Hinds County Memorial. "Growing up we had a picture in our living room, it was the only picture of the Arizona, the monument they put up," Parker said.
Parker is assistant to District 4 Supervisor and Brigadier General Phil Fisher, who is currently serving in Afghanistan.
The ceremony at the War Memorial in Jackson took place inside and outside. It also included a wreath laying and a rifle salute.
Veterans of current conflicts mingled with veterans from past wars.
"This is a special day," said World War II veteran George McCarthy. McCarthy was a combat rifleman in Normandy, France, and a prisoner of war in Germany for ten months when he was 19-years-old.
He said he was treated reasonably well. "I was very fortunate. We were in a little work camp, we were guarded by German combat veterans who had served but been injured," he mentioned.
But when the Germans began marching American prisoners of war, he and another prisoner escaped. "It was 17 days before the Americans came and found us," he said.
McCarthy observes every Veterans Day, for those who made it home, and those who didn't.
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