MYRTLE BEACH S.C. (WBTW) — Fallen service members were honored Monday during a ceremony at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center as Americans marked the traditional Memorial Day holiday.
The ballroom at the convention center was full of veterans, including many who fought in Vietnam, Korea and Afghanistan.
The ceremony started with the presentation of the Colors, the national anthem and the Pledge of Allegiance.
Dr. Gerald Harmon, a U.S. Air Force and National Guard veteran who is also vice president of medical affairs at Tidelands Health, gave the Memorial Day address.
“We were fortunate enough to do our duty, take the oath, raise your hand, and serve in some capacity from a few days into a scenario to a career, decades, and we came home to our loved ones,” Harmon said. “The ones who didn’t make it, that’s who we’re remembering today.”
Harmon said Memorial Day is a time for reflection and, also, education.
“Let’s take the opportunity with Memorial Day here to recognize and educate our children, why we’re able to do this,” Harmon said. “Some people have made this possible. I talked about the concept of America. It’s not just the geography and the borders, it’s the construct that we’re here in a free county.”
Harmon was later presented with a Quilt of Valor from the Myrtle Beach Shore Birds Quilt of Valor Foundation.
“I take it on behalf of other veterans, from others who have served much more valiantly than I,” Harmon said. “So I’ll take it in the spirit it was given, as a reflection of honor for people much more honorable than me.”
The event ended with service songs, a wreath-laying ceremony and the playing of taps.