Ceremony was conducted in Fairview and Calvary Cemeteries on Saturday.

On Saturday morning, the families of military veterans in the Fairview and Calvary Cemeteries gathered at the Columbarium to honor those who have served in the armed forces of this country and to lay a wreath upon their graves. The ceremony takes place at 12 noon eastern time, and at the corresponding same time across the country, which is 10 a.m. in La Junta. Unfortunately, the wreaths were late getting started from their place of origin in Maine because of a crash of their computer system just when the trucks were being loaded. The ceremony had to take place at the ordained time, so it proceeded without the wreaths.

Mitch Zgorgynski gave the address, asking those who did not have a loved one in the armed forces to copy a name down from a veteran’s gravestone and search that name on the internet to find out about that person. A striking part of the speech was a quotation from President Ronald Reagan: “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children int he bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for the to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our Children’s children what it was once like int the United States where men were free.” Zgorgynski, who served in the Desert Storm era, is still serving as a member of the La Junta Police Department.

About 1 p.m., the wreaths finally arrived and were distributed to the waiting relatives and friends of veterans, as well as extra wreaths laid by American Legion Post #9. We learned that the Fort Lyon wreaths, originally scheduled to be shipped on another truck earlier, arrived on the same truck that delivered the Lamar/La Junta/Cheraw/Rocky Ford wreaths. Jay Scott supervised distribution of the wreaths. Serving in the color guard were Ron Tomlin, Mary Medina, Jim Thompson, Dan Davis, Jim Ridgwell, Zgorgynski and Leon Davis, who played taps on his trumpet.