By Winston Boddie
Veterans from Edgefield, Johnston, Trenton, and McCormick assembled on Memorial Day, May 30, 2022, at the Edgefield Veterans’ Memorial Park to remember Edgefield County’s fallen heroes.
Master of Ceremony Winston Boddie welcomed the large crowd of gatherers who stood watch as Jerome Childs and Tommy Tripp placed a wreath at the base of the American flag. As part of the program, Evangelist Ryan Talbert delivered the opening prayer and “The Star-Spangled Banner” was performed by Larry and Brenda Abney.
Headline speaker Ella C. Calvert, Sergeant First Class, U.S. Army (Retired) reflected on the importance of expressing our nation’s collective gratitude on Memorial Day, followed by Rep. Bill Clyburn who spoke passionately on American patriotism. Caroline Piekielniak recited the poem, “In Flanders Field,” and Jane Doolittle voiced tribute to our nation’s POW/MIA.
Doug Timmerman read aloud the names of the 79 Edgefield County servicemen who perished in wartime. Strom Thurmond H.S. senior Carley Baird played “Taps” on her bugle followed by the release of doves by John McGee. A moving rendition of American the Beautiful, recorded by Ray Charles, was played over the loud speakers.
The commemoration was a joint undertaking by the Edgefield County Veterans’ Affairs Office, Edgefield VFW Post 6932, Johnston American Legion Posts 154 and 222, and Edgefield American Legion Post 30.