The Yuma community comes together to commemorate our fallen heroes on this Memorial Day

News 11’s Adonis Albright covers the ceremonies held across the city to pay tribute to the nation’s fallen heroes

YUMA, Arizona (KYMA, KECY) – Local veterans organizations across Yuma County held ceremonies on Memorial Day to honor and commemorate the brave men and women who paid the ultimate price for our freedom.

The VFW Post 1763, American Legion, AMVETS, and many other veteran groups attended the ceremonies that began Monday morning at 8 a.m. at the Ocean to Ocean Bridge where wreaths were presented in honor of fallen soldiers.

The following Memorial Day ceremony was held at Johnson Mortuary & Desert Lawn Memorial Park, where the national anthem was sung by Ariana Camarillo.

“To me, it means simply honoring everyone who has served us,” Camarillo said when asked about the importance of Memorial Day. She’s been singing the national anthem for years, but last year the coronavirus pandemic put an end to it, and this year she’s excited to be doing what she loves again.

The Territorial Young Marines were also present. The organization tries to keep children away from drugs. But on Memorial Day, they also learn a valuable lesson about the importance of why the nation recognizes the last Monday in May each year.

“We must respect the people who died in the war for our freedom and respect others who are still here today,” said Jesús Reyes of the Yuma Young Marines.

José Escarsega is the commandant of the Territorial Young Marines in Yuma. He served 21 years in the United States Marine Corps as a gunnery sergeant. As a veteran, Escarsega knows firsthand the sacrifices his comrades have made; something that he is now passing on to the next generation.

“It is very important that we make our children and everyone aware of what these men and women did and died for our country. Without the people who serve in the military, we wouldn’t have the freedom we have. “

Memorial Day is a grim reminder to many that freedom is not free, but honoring the brave men and women who paid the ultimate price and paved the way for freedom is an important tradition.

VFW Post 1763 is calling for volunteers to collect the crosses on the graves of all veterans on Tuesday June 1st at 3 p.m. at Johnson Mortuary & Desert Lawn Memorial Park. To find out more, visit their Facebook page.

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