Anchorage, KTUU — On Memorial Day at the Fort Richardson National Cemetery, veterans, families of veterans, and members of the public turned out to honor those who have given their lives serving in our country’s armed services.
"We are deeply honored to stand with you commemorating the lives and remembering the contribution of those men and women who have laid down their lives in service to our nation," said Col. John "Jimmy Joe" James, Commander of the Alaska State Defense Force.
Since 1971, the last Monday in May has been set aside to pay homage to those who have given their lives in battle on behalf of the United States.
Across a sea of white tombstones, Carol Bridge and her husband Frank search for the resting place of her father, a World War II veteran. After a slow walk through the cemetery, carefully reading the names on grave markers, the Bridge's find what they're looking for, replacing the flowers left from their previous visit with a new bouquet.
"We remember my dad today," Bridge said while looking down at the grave, fighting back tears.
It's been 22 years since the passing of her father, but Bridge says it's always a proud moment for her to recognize her father’s sacrifice for the freedoms and liberties that she and so many other Americans enjoy today.
"They're loved," Bridge said. "They're up in heaven, and they're just watching over us right now."