While many people throughout the country will gather throughout the weekend to remember those who have sacrificed their lives while serving the United States, residents in Bryan County will have ample opportunity to celebrate locally.
Memorial Day will be recognized on both ends of the county, though service and event times and locations vary.
Festivities will begin in the southern end of the county Saturday when Fort McAllister State Historic Park will have its annual Memorial Day weekend program. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Civil War soldier life will be highlighted through soldier encampments and battle re-enactments.
Musket and cannon demonstrations, as well as special salutes in honor of war dead, will be conducted as part of the program. The cost of the program is $6.50 per adult and $3.75 per child.
Then on Monday, both of the county’s municipalities will conduct observances.
In Pembroke, the American Legion Ladies Auxiliary Unit will host its sixth annual Memorial Day program at 10:30 a.m. Monday in downtown Pembroke.
Unit member Susie Magee said Pembroke resident Emma Lane will sing several songs at the event. Two flags will also be raised in honor of two Vietnam veterans.
Magee said flags in honor of Jack Butler Jr. and Orvin Williams will be added to the field of flags in downtown Pembroke that will be on display.
Meanwhile, Richmond Hill residents will have two opportunities to remember those who have served the country. Beginning at 11 a.m. Monday, the city will also host a Memorial Day program in J.F. Gregory Park.
According to Planning and Zoning Director Steve Scholar, the service will feature several speakers, including Richmond Hill Mayor Harold Fowler and representatives from the American Legion, Vietnam Veterans of America and Veterans of Foreign Wars.
The featured speaker at the event is Col. Douglas Cardinale, commander of the 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team at Fort Stewart. The event will also feature a 21-gun salute, and a wreath will be laid at the veteran’s monument in the park.
Also on Monday, another program hosted by former Richmond Hill mayor Richard Davis, when at 2 p.m., he and others will gather at the foot of the viaduct on Highway 17 south in Richmond Hill to dedicate a brand new American flag that will wave over the city.
The flag is a product of Davis’ “Fly the Flag Fund,” which he started to bring a flag back to that location. The first flag was raised there in 2007 but has not flown in that spot for about a year and a half, Davis said.
Davis said the ceremony will include remarks from a few people as well as an invocation for the country and community. The flag will be raised to the top of the pole, he said, then brought to half-staff in recognition of Memorial Day.
After the dedication, Davis said members of the American Legion will be on hand to properly retire three flags that once flew at that location.