WEST MONROE, La. (KNOE) - The Blue Star Mothers of Northeast Louisiana and the City of West Monroe started Memorial Day weekend with a remembrance ceremony. People gathered at the bell tower in downtown West Monroe to honor the 54 fallen soldiers from north Louisiana.
Erskine and Gail Lindsey drove from Ruston to honor their son Jack. “He was at the Air Force Academy as an Air Force cadet studying to be a pilot, and he was killed in an accident while he was out there five years ago,” Gail says.
“Until it hits you as to the real meaning of Memorial Day, you don’t really take the time to stop and remember.”
The names of the 54 soldiers from north Louisiana were read aloud followed by the bell being tolled for them.
Blue Star Mothers of Northeast Louisiana president Jayme Watson says it’s important we never forget those who sacrificed their life for our country. “It’s really important to remember them, to call their names, so that they’ll be remembered,” Watson says. “It’s a promise we made to the parents when they died and since that we would never forget their sacrifice.”
Gail Lindsey says, “It brings to mind all the other families that are suffering from losing a loved one that chose to serve their country.”
“It’s important for us to remember our Gold star families, to become friends with them, which we have,” Watson says. “They’re like our own family, and it’s important for them to know they’re not alone. Because that’s all anyone ever really wants. For you to remember that they’ve lost a loved one, and their loved one mattered.”
Flags were also placed at the Blue Star Memorial Highway Gardens to honor each soldier.