SOUTH WALTON Fla. (WMBB) — Many residents and visitors living south of the bay attended the historic Gulf Cemetery Memorial Day ceremony.
To commemorate those who have lost their lives while wearing their uniform, a traveling Vietnam Memorial Wall is on display located right across from the 106-year-old cemetery.
Endless names line the Vietnam Memorial Wall at the Chapel at Crosspoint in Santa Rosa Beach. Some of those names are of father and son who had served together but did not make it out of their uniform.
“Those 58,250 plus names are real people and we don’t want to ever forget that,” said Reverend Dr. Scooter Ward
Memorial Day is about celebrating the freedoms we have, by remembering those who served to protect.
“And we are so thankful for those men and women who gave their lives so we can have the freedoms that we have today,” said Ward.
For veterans who have returned, unlike many others, do not have to grieve alone.
“Especially the Vietnam Veterans who were here today, who knew those people that are on that wall,” said Ward. “That knew their hair color, knew what they sounded like, knew the jokes that they laughed at and served side by side next to them. I think it is a way for us to say that we are here and we support you.”
There are 156 veterans buried across 40 acres of the Gulf Cemetery’s grounds. Three from the Civil War and most recently, one from the war in Afghanistan.