Morris Frock holds annual service



They said they had to do it.

On a day when speakers at some Memorial Day services spoke about America's youth and their indifference toward the celebrated day, four Hagerstown teenagers said they had to pay respect to the nation's flag.

The boys were riding their bicycles Sunday afternoon when they came to the intersection of Jonathan and West Washington streets, where Morris Frock American Legion Post 42's annual Memorial Day service was being held. They each stopped their bikes, removed their baseball caps and faced the flag as the first few notes of "God Bless America" began to play.

"We had to," said Ryan Bean, 15.

He was riding with Steven Gordon, 14, Matt Cody, 14, and Josh Smith, 15, all of Hagerstown.

More than 25 groups laid wreaths in front of the Washington County Circuit Court building during the Sunday afternoon ceremony. About 60 people attended the event.


"I wish more people would come," said Bob Barthlow of Leitersburg. "The streets should be filled with people."

Glenn E. Trumpower, a past commander of William D. Byron Post 1936 Veterans of Foreign Wars, said he served in the U.S. Army for 20 years. He served two tours of duty in Vietnam, and there are 115 years of military service in his family, Trumpower said.

"I support the troops," he said. "Freedom is not free. That's the reason I'm here."

Hagerstown Mayor Robert E. Bruchey II spoke during the event, saying that some people take the nation's armed forced for granted.

"There are some people who believe we're some place we shouldn't be," Bruchey said, referring to the war in Iraq. "(Those serving in the military) know they are there serving their country, serving their president and serving us."

Betty Getz of Hagerstown brought her granddaughters, 6-year-old Aly and 3-year-old Katie, to the Memorial Day service. Getz's husband, Frank, is a past commander of Morris Frock American Legion Post 42.

He served for 24 years in the U.S. Navy.

Betty Getz said she is at the event each year, but this was the first time she brought her granddaughters.

"It's important for them to see what we do to honor our troops," she said.

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