BRIARCLIFF MANOR, N.Y. Everyone knows someone who dedicates their life to protecting others, including police, firefighters and those in the military, Briarcliff Manor Village Administrator Philip Zegarelli said Monday.
Everyone knows someone and by the same token, we should remember those not only of today but of previous years that ensured our freedom, he said. For that, we should all be very glad and thankful for the role they continue to play today.
Zegarelli spoke during Briarcliff Manor's annual Memorial Day Service at Law Memorial Park in front of more than 100 people, including residents, veterans and local organizations who had gathered to honor veterans and remember those who gave their lives in service.
An earlier Memorial Day parade included the Briarcliff Manor Fire Department, Little League teams and Girl and Boy Scout troops marching through downtown.
For all the 17 or 18 million men and women who served in World War II, 1.6 million are still alive, Zegarelli said. Indeed, every day 1,100 World War II veterans pass away. Every day close to 300 Korean War veterans pass away, and every day 250 or so more Vietnam-era veterans pass away.
Zegarelli explained the history and traditions behind Memorial Day, saying it has become more and more commercialized. The day's true meaning, he said, is to remember.
One of the most important things to remember is what we see today, he said. Wars continue, conflicts continue, and America continues to create more heroes.
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