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Time for remembering
Events to honor sacrifices of military
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Forsyth County News

At a glance

* Friday: Memorial Day ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. at the Veterans War Memorial, 301 Veterans Memorial Blvd. in Cumming.

* Monday: Twilight’s Last Gleaming will also be held at the memorial. That event begins at 8:30 p.m. Patrons are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, blankets and picnics.

During World War II, a bulletin board hung on a hallway in the Forsyth County Courthouse.

As more soldiers were sent off to war, family members would tack up a photograph of their soldier to honor their bravery.

Tattered after a 1973 courthouse fire, those photographs still shine as a reminder of the veterans' sacrifice through efforts of the Historical Society of Forsyth County.

For the first time, the photos have been digitally transferred and will be shown as a collection again Monday during the inaugural Twilight’s Last Gleaming event.

“The historical society let me know they had come across these 300 photos of World War II vets,” said Linda Heard, event coordinator. “When I saw those, I knew that this was a wonderful historic find and something worth preserving, and we decided to help the historical society preserve that to a video.”

The video will be shown during Monday’s Memorial Day event, which will include a musical performance by the Noteworthy Show Band of the South. The band will perform music from the 1930s and 1940s, Heard said.

“This is the music of their era,” she said. “The music they listened to and the music that might have kept their spirits high.”

Heard said she expects the show to become an annual event, with more soldiers being added to the World War II slideshow and the city branching out into other war eras.

“I had never known there were that many [WWII veterans] from this area and when you see their names, you see all of the old families from this area, so it’s going to be a wonderful thing to preserve,” Heard said. “It becomes more than just this concert ... this was a vehicle to make sure these things were not lost.”

The event follows the city’s annual Avenue of Flags dedication Friday. The event will honor the memory of 171 veterans as 10 new flags are added to represent those who have served.

This year’s flags represent U.S. Navy veterans Raymond Hubert Bennett, H. Scudder Edwards and U.S. Air Force veterans Carl E. Sewell and John Casper Jr.

U.S. Army veterans George Wilson Corn, Sidney C. Cowan, Winford L. Cruse, Franklin D. Martin, John Anderson Sewell, Eldred B. Watson and Wendell Joseph Weldy Sr. will also be represented by a flag.

Allison Smith, event coordinator, said because of military budget reductions, the city’s usual fighter pilot fly-over was cut. But in its place, there will be a dove release.

“We were looking for something a little different to add something special,” Smith said. “I’m really looking forward to both ceremonies. I think we’ll have a really good turnout for both. They both are a different way to honor our vets.”