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Private Memorial Day Ceremonies in Ohio Valley to Mark Solemn Holiday

WHEELING — Society may have spent its spring behind closed doors due to COVID-19, but the need to honor the fallen endures.

American Legion Post 1 will be holding a private Memorial Day ceremony at the Heritage Port amphitheater at 11 a.m. today. The event is not open to the public, due to social distancing concerns, and in accordance with city, state and Centers for Disease Control recommendations, 25 or fewer members of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars and Marine Corps League will be in attendance.

Mike Doyle, chairman of Post 1 American Legion Committee, said the ceremony will serve not only to honor the memory of those who gave their lives for the country, but the families left behind.

“Memorial Day is a day to recognize our fallen, those who have given their life for the freedoms we enjoy,” Doyle said. “A lot of the veterans, who are still alive, have witnessed guys dying on the battlefields, and that goes all the way back through our history, all the way to the Civil War, and we want to recognize those heroes who’ve given their lives for our country.”

The ceremony will be abbreviated somewhat, Doyle said, to minimize the length of time the participants will spend in proximity to one another.

There will be a wreath ceremony and U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Steve Habursky will serve as the featured speaker.

The Moundsville Veterans Honor Guard will also be holding an event at 11 a.m., also closed to the public, but which will be streamed on Facebook Live on the City of Moundsville’s page.

The Marshall County Commissioners will be on hand to recite the names of deceased veterans from the county, followed by a Post Everlasting ceremony from the American Legion, followed by a 21-gun salute.

Veterans in the Weirton area also have organized their own event to commemorate Memorial Day as veterans organizations are closed. A small group will meet at 11 a.m. today outside the Walmart in Weirton. The featured speaker will be Lt. Colonel Roy Ramey, a Gold Star son.

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