Updated: May 25, 2020 06:17 PM
Created: May 25, 2020 04:59 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — It was a different kind of Memorial Day ceremony at the Santa Fe National Cemetery because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
It was also a solemn day of remembrance as family members visited the graves of their loved ones.
They placed flowers on the headstones and took a moment to reflect on their veteran’s life and service to our country.
On Monday morning there was a rifle salute during a private memorial ceremony that the cemetery streamed on Facebook to honor all the brave men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice while serving in the military.
A wreath laying ceremony was followed by a moment of silence.
This year’s ceremony wasn’t just about honoring those who lost their lives in battle. It was also about remembering those who lost their lives to the coronavirus pandemic.
“With the pandemic in mind I ask you to take a moment to reflect on our fellow Americans who have been victims of COVID-19 as well as their grieving family members,” said the cemetery’s assistant director. “In addition, think about the healthcare workers who have risked their own lives to help their fellow citizens who have been afflicted by this devastating coronavirus.”
The cemetery’s director, Cindy Van Bibber, acknowledged that this Memorial Day ceremony was different because it couldn’t be attended by a large crowd to honor our fallen heroes.
“Today’s ceremony is like none other than I have ever experienced,” she said. “I’m sure you all agree the last three months have been anything but normal for any of us. We’ve missed you being here with us, but know that we are still moving forward to honor, celebrate, and solemnly remember those who have courageously sacrificed to preserve our freedom.”
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