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County hosts Memorial Day ceremony

Patriotism was in abundance during the 2018 Chilton County Memorial Day observance in downtown Clanton.

Temporary bleachers were set up in front of the war memorial monument next to the courthouse for those that attended the ceremony.

Pete DeLeon was the guest speaker. He served in the United States Air Force after his family emigrated from Cuba, and he became a citizen at 16 years old.

“I ask God to bless America and what it has stood for,” DeLeon said.

DeLeon currently works as a part-time deputy with the Chilton County Sheriff’s Office.

Throughout his speech, he shared what Memorial Day means to him.

“If we truly want to honor them [military members who have died serving], we must do our part,” DeLeon said. “No matter how small or big, we must honor those that have fallen.”

Following DeLeon’s speech, the names of 106 former Chilton County residents that died during military combat were read along with the war they fought in.

Veterans Eugene Cost, Jerry Grooms, Morris Price and Ocie Williams read the names in conjunction with the various wars.

Price read the names from the Korean War and stated that one of the men he started school with.

Williams read the names associated with the Vietnam War, as well as Lebanon and Iraq, which included his cousin and nephew.

Williams thanked the young people for coming out and taking part in the remembrance.

Morris Price and his son Mike placed a wreath in front of the monument that bears the names of the 106 people that have died in combat and called Chilton County home.

“Taps” was then played over the speaker system.

Grooms also took the time to remember all the men and women who have served in the military during peacetime.

The ceremony also included Girl Scouts leading the “Pledge of Allegiance” and Beta Pinkly and Marie Owens singing “America,” which was a medley of iconic songs.