American Legion, Lawrence community members honor those who made the ‘ultimate sacrifice’

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Lawrence community members, including many in uniform, gathered Monday morning to memorialize servicepeople who have died.

The American Legion Dorsey-Liberty Post No. 14 of Lawrence held its annual service at Oak Hill Cemetery, marking the occasion with taps and a 21-gun salute. 

The keynote speaker, Bryan Zesiger, is a retired Army major. He noted that unlike Veterans Day, which is for all who have served, Memorial Day is specifically to honor those who lost their lives in service. 

“It is a solemn remembrance of the cost of freedom and the values we fought to protect,” Zesiger said. “… Now, then, and in the future, let us continue to remember and honor their legacy, ensuring their sacrifices are never forgotten.”

August Rudisell/Lawrence Times Bryan Zesiger, a retired Army major, delivers the keynote address at the Memorial Day event.

Zesiger served from 1994 to 2019. Since he retired, he said, he’s still becoming accustomed to people thanking him for his service. At first he wasn’t sure what to say in response. 

“Now, I completely understand — or at least I’m becoming more comfortable in what that service means,” he said. “My response now, ‘Thank you for your service,’ is, ‘You’re worth it, and this country is worth it.’” 

The ceremony included the reading of the names of 10 post members who have died in the past year.

Post members ask the community to please join in recognizing the national moment of silence at 3 p.m. on Memorial Day.

August Rudisell/Lawrence Times Rep. Barbara Ballard sings the national anthem at the ceremony.
August Rudisell/Lawrence Times
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August Rudisell (he/him) has been a photographer and videographer for The Lawrence Times since March 2021. He is a former dispatcher, he avidly consumes and creates local news, and he would love to meet your dog when out and about at a community event.

See more of his work for the Times here. He can be reached at arudisell (at) lawrencekstimes (dot) com.

Mackenzie Clark (she/her), reporter/founder of The Lawrence Times, can be reached at mclark (at) lawrencekstimes (dot) com. Read more of her work for the Times here. Check out her staff bio here.

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