Natchitoches’ downtown riverbank was filled with veterans, families and area residents May 31 as the community held its annual Memorial Day Program.
Jeremy Miller, NSU Army ROTC alumni, former Army officer and combat veteran, served as the Master of Ceremonies. Ron Brown gave the opening prayer after which NCHS’ Army JROTC cadets posted the colors. After Wayne Nelson led the Pledge of Allegiance, Sarah Puryear Dunn performed a wonderful rendition of the National Anthem. Natchitoches Mayor Ronnie Williams welcomed the crowd. The Memorial Day address was delivered by Congressman Mike Johnson.
The event also featured a tribute to the late Truman Maynard, NSU alumni, Army officer, executive and one of the founders of the Natchitoches Parish Veterans and Memorial Park. Superbly talented Natchitoches Parish fifth grader Darvy Allison performed “America the Beautiful” accompanied by her teacher Dr. Samuel Stokes.
The name of each of the area veterans who passed away over the past two years was read by Ron Brown, Janet Darfus, Dee Fowler and Wayne Nelson after which Dr. John Dunn played Taps.
A moment of silence was observed after which Ms. Leta Brown led the crowd in the classic “God Bless America.” In ceremonies like today’s, held in communities across our nation, we remember the price paid for our liberties. May their memory be a blessing.