WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - Wilmington National Cemetery had quite the day. Folks coming and going all Memorial Day to pay their respects for those who have fallen in the line of duty.
It’s a day unlike any other—a day of honor and remembrance of those who have given the ultimate sacrifice. Everyday brothers, sisters, fathers and mothers , forever known as warriors who died protecting us.
“Its heart wrenching," said Marc Biddison, an Air Force veteran. "The folks, the men, the women that died—they never got to live their life, they never got to experience their life, things that we are experiencing. That’s what hurts the most.”
At the Wilmington National Cemetery, it’s an annual tradition for the New Hanover Veterans Council to read the names of those who have passed in the last year, allowing friends and family to remember a total of 718 fallen sons and daughters of New Hanover, Pender and Brunswick Counties.
“In most cases, everyone living here now volunteered, they volunteered their service," said Curt Farriso, Marine veteran. "They volunteered...the fact their life could be lost...and consequently, they paid the ultimate sacrifice.”
Farrison, along with Marc Biddison, are also at the heart of the five large flags being flown throughout Wilmington.
But, it’s not just for the Memorial Day remembrance; it’s to show pride in their country and to give everybody strength.
“Flags is what make us who we are; we fought and we died for these flags," said Farrison. "That’s the flag that represents this great country of ours. This country always has been great, and it never will be nothing but great—every now and then you need to bump it, just a tad.”
The veterans walk the hallowed rows of service members—service that will always be remembered. That’s why on Memorial Day, they pay their respects, like millions of others, to those who lost their lives so ours could continue in freedom.
“This is for those who gave the ultimate sacrifice so we could be standing here today," said Biddison. "And, to honor them in any way that we can is spectacular.”
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the flags flying at every grave weren’t originally going to be put up. However, much to the surprise of everyone walking in the area Monday morning, someone made it happen.