Northeast Florida honors its fallen

Memorial Day honored with solemn moments, picnics, concerts and fireworks

By Jim Piggott - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Events were held to across the nation and throughout Northeast Florida to commemorate those gave their lives serving in the armed forces.

In additional hundreds who gathered early Monday to hear remarks at the city's official ceremony at Jacksonville's Veterans Memorial Wall, others paid their respects in a more personal way at the Jacksonville National Cemetery on the Northside. American flags were placed in front of every tombstone.

Joyce Ann Moody brought her kids to the grave of their great grandfather, hoping they will carry on the tradition.

“It’s really important to me to let the kids know why we are celebrating today,” Moody said. 

Her teenage daughter said the children understand why they were there and thought it was very impressive.

“We knew about our great-grandfather," Sarah Moody said. "It’s a good reminder for all of the people that go away and fight for our country it’s nice to show respect for the day."

Jacksonville National Cemetery

Fifty miles south in Green Cove Springs, RiverFest continued all day.  Navy veteran John Lynch was with his family, enjoying the picnic and spending time with friends. The day of food and music was to culminate with a fireworks show about 9:45 p.m.

“Many of the people I served with died while in active duty. This is to celebrate and remember their loss. They made the ultimate sacrifice for everyone else,” Lynch said. “So I appreciate what Green Cove Springs in Clay County has done."

Back in Jacksonville, an evening picnic and concert to honor the nation's fallen heroes was held at Memorial Park in Riverside. The U.S. Navy Band Southeast performed.

People were encouraged to dress patriotically in red, white and blue and bring their own blankets, folding chairs and their own picnic food to enjoy during or after the concert.

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