Boonsboro remembers fallen in ceremony

May 24, 2009|by DAVE McMILLION

Slideshow: Memorial Day in Washington County

BOONSBORO -- During its 23rd annual Memorial Day celebration Sunday afternoon, Boonsboro exuded a small-town feel.

People lined Main Street waiting for the parade to begin, a group of people ate food on a front porch of a house and two vendors pushed carts full of toys in hopes of catching the attention of children.

When a wreath presentation was about to start at 1 p.m. near the intersection of Main and Potomac streets, the busy thoroughfare was closed to traffic so words of reflection could begin.

Members of an honor guard marched up Main Street and stopped in front of Boonsboro Town Hall as the ceremony got under way.


The speaker for the ceremony, the state president of the American Legion Auxiliary, reflected on her first memories of paying tribute to the nation's veterans.

Meredith "Rusty" Beeg remembered going to grade school in the Boston area and how her school group went to a cemetery to honor veterans. There was no marching band during that tribute and Beeg remembered walking up a dusty road to get to the graveyard.

Beeg's assignment was to place flowers she had on a veteran's grave that had no decorations. She fulfilled her duty, although at age 7 she did not totally grasp its importance.

But Beeg knew it was important and she said that is why young people must be exposed to Memorial Day services.

If they are not, "It will be forgotten," Beeg said of the holiday.

People sat on steps leading up to buildings and on porches around the intersection of Main and Potomac streets. Mayor Charles F. "Skip" Kauffman Jr. came down from the porch at Town Hall to thank veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice.

Toward the end of the ceremony, a 14-year-old member of the Boonsboro High School color guard who was involved in the ceremony fell backward into Main Street in front of the speakers' podium. A crowd of people gathered around the boy to assess his medical condition and an ambulance pulled up.

It appears the boy fainted, said Col. Randy Wilkinson of the Washington County Sheriff's Department, who was among the people to came to the boy's aid. It seemed like the boy was going to be OK, although he was taken to Washington County Hospital to be assessed, Wilkinson said.

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