The city of Cumming will host a ceremony this week to celebrate veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice.
On Friday, May 24, at 11 a.m., the city’s annual Memorial Day event will be held at the Veterans War Memorial in downtown Cumming and will include songs from local groups, a rifle salute, dove release and the dedication of new flags to the city’s Avenue of Flags, which, since 1995, has flown flags dedicated by members of the community flown for soldiers in their family.
Names added to the Avenue of Flags this year will be Air Force veteran Hulett Byron Bearden, Army veterans Harley Hunter Sutton, Allen “Lee” Russell, Warren Tobin and Charles Barrett Thomas and Navy veterans Frank Ciszek, Denver Ade Martin, William Joel Webb and Louis Wojtysiak.
Georgia Army National Guard Brig. Gen. Reginald Neal will serve as the keynote speaker of the ceremony. Neal has received extensive awards and decorations, including The Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit and two Bronze Star Medals.
Neal has served in Afghanistan as an executive officer in National Guard Bureau at the Pentagon and as deputy commandeering general of National Guard Affairs for U.S. Army South at Fort Sam Houston.
Don Weldon, a local Army veteran, will serve as master of ceremonies, and the Rev. Kevin Medcalf with Providence Presbyterian Church will give the invocation.
The Forsyth County Fire and Sheriff’s Department Honor Guard will present colors, hold a rifle salute and play “Taps” before the white dove release.