Alabama National Cemetery to hold Memorial Day ceremony

Published 11:26 am Monday, May 9, 2022

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MONTEVALLO – The 14th annual Memorial Day Ceremony at the Alabama National Cemetery will take place at 9 a.m. on Monday, May 30, at the main flag assembly area at ALNC.

There will be a flyover, patriotic music by Homeland, Civil Air Patrol Color Guard, the National Anthem sung by Rob Robinson, ceremonial service wreath laying by family members of military heroes who are interred at ALNC, a rifle salute, TAPS, a cannon salute and more.

Federal, state and local dignitaries are expected to attend.

Pam Nichols, who serves as chairwoman of the Support Committee for the Alabama National Cemetery, said one of her goals has been to involve more young people in ceremonies that honor those who have sacrificed so much for the freedoms they enjoy.

In keeping with Nichols’s goals, this year’s keynote speaker is Emma Noble, a 17-year-old junior at the Alabama School of Fine Arts.

Noble emerged as the winner of the American Legion’s 83rd National Oratorical Contest from a competitive field of 49 other high school orators who had won their respective American Legion state level department oratorical contests.

Charley Bourland, a 15-year-old Oak Mountain High School student and Gold Star son of Lt. Col. Kenneth D. Bourland, U.S. Air Force, who is buried at ALNC, will act as the ceremony emcee.

The ceremony is planned and executed by the SCALNC with assistance from the staff of the ALNC.

The public is invited to attend this moving ceremony to remember and honor the men and women who gave their lives in military service to a grateful nation.

In preparation for Memorial Day Observance, the SCALNC will hold a brief flag placement ceremony on Saturday, May 28, at 9 a.m. at Committal Shelter 3.

Afterwards, family members with loved ones who are interred at ALNC will go first to place U.S. flags at their loved ones’ headstones; then, volunteers will place the remaining flags.

“With over 9,000 veterans interred, we welcome anyone who would like to volunteer, especially youth groups,” Nichols said. “Let us never stop educating our youth about the price that has been paid for their freedom. A trip with them to one of our most sacred shrines – our national cemeteries – is a good place to start.”

For more information on volunteer opportunities for Memorial Day, visit the SC website blog and follow the instructions in the link.

Surviving family members, friends and all Americans, young and old, are encouraged to remember and reflect on the achievements wrought by the sacrifice of our country’s veterans.

“Freedom is not free, and we owe a debt of honor to both the heroes who sacrificed their lives to win and maintain our freedom and to their families for their sacrifice,” ALNC Director Steven Weir-Santos said.

The Alabama National Cemetery is located at 3133 Alabama 119 in Montevallo.