FORT MITCHELL, Ala. — People from around the Valley turned out to Fort Mitchell National Cemetery in honor of those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation.
“Celebrations like this are important for our community because it helps people remember the soldiers that are buried here come from all walks of life,” says Todd Newkirk, the Assistant Cemetery Director
Nearly four million Americans, including veterans of every war are buried in the VA’S national cemeteries. Their commitment endures year round for our active service men and women
“It means the world to me because my dad is actually buried here in Fort Mitchell Cemetery he died back in 2003 he served in Vietnam a career he’s always been my hero,” says one attendee John Cole.
Cole says his dad isn’t the only family member who’s served in the military. His son currently serves in the United States Army.
“My son decided when he graduated high school he went right into the military and he’s serving in Alaska and he’s really enjoying it. I’m getting ready to go see him, I’m looking forward to that,”Cole says.
David Diramio, an Associate Professor for Auburn University, was the speaker at Sunday’s ceremony. He believes female veterans should receive more recognition than they do now. He also hopes people talk more about substance abuse as a critical topic in the military.
“I’ve known folks who’s taken their own lives. I just wanted to get that message out there that we have to stay vigilant when it comes to mental health and supporting our veterans,” Diramio says.
Cole has a message for those remembering veterans on Memorial Day.
“I’ve known folks who’s taken their own lives. I just wanted to get that message out there that we have to stay vigilant when it comes to mental health and supporting our veterans,” he says.