Choir performance, remembrance cross featured in Kingsport Memorial Day event

KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) — A crowd gathered at Kingsport Veterans Memorial Park on Monday for a service where people honored and remembered fallen soldiers, along with celebrating the freedom they fought for.

People found their seats around the veterans memorial monument. Many greeted dear friends and enjoyed a service where they remembered those who died during or after service, or are still missing.

Elected officials attended the event, including Senator Diana Harshbarger, Representative Bud Hulsey and Representative John Crawford.

Liberty Celebrations Choir performed an array of patriotic music from their upcoming concert planned for late June. The choir’s conductor, Marc Strand, spoke to the significance of music in the Memorial Day event.

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“It’s a way to develop the emotion that comes along with it,” said Strand. “A chance to remember, but a chance to celebrate.”

Event leaders acknowledged the Table of the Missing Man, and Korean War veterans placed the memorial wreath.

A white cross was presented as a continued remembrance of fallen soldiers. People were offered the chance to acknowledge those people close to them, and place an American flag for each one.

Navy Vietnam veteran, Melvin Drumgoole, placed a flag for his two close friends.

“[My friends] were Marine veterans and they’re both deceased,” said Drumgoole. “So, I think on this day, it’s to honor them. They were good friends of mine. We went to Dobyns-Bennett together.”

Drumgoole and many others carry the memory of these people with them everyday.

Shots from rifle volleys rang throughout the memorial park. As the trumpet played taps, Kingsport community members saluted fallen soldiers.

Commander of American Legion Hammond Post 3, Angelo Pellitteri, thought of men he served with overseas.

“Especially when you see some of the veterans choking up and family members, it’s quite meaningful,” said Pellitteri. “And this is what it’s all about, is remembering those who gave.”

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