‘Reverent celebration’

  • Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Leslie Cantu/Journal Scene Members of the local Veterans of Foreign Wars post gathered Monday along with other veterans groups and Summerville residents to honor those who died serving their country. See more photos, pages 10A and 9B.

Memorial Day is a day for ‘reverent celebration,’ retired Rear Admiral Robert Besal told the crowd gathered at Parks Cemetery on Monday to honor service members who died for their country; but he also offered more pointed words.

“We can recognize their sacrifices by taking care of their still living comrades…in a prompt and timely manner,” he said.

The Veterans Affairs Administration is engulfed in a growing scandal over long waits, doctored documentation of those wait times, and deaths that some blame on the lag in care.

Besal also offered commentary on Pentagon plans to cut troop levels.

“The future strength of our nation’s armed forces has me concerned,” he said.

There are people around the world waiting to test the U.S’s will and strength, he warned. He urged listeners to make their voices heard and oppose cuts.

The annual Memorial Day ceremony is hosted by the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3433 along with other veterans service organizations.

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