At a morning Memorial Day ceremony, the city of Palm Coast honored the men and women who sacrificed their lives defending our country.
Surrounded by monuments at Heroes Memorial Park on Monday, May 29, Mayor David Alfin read the names inscribed on the city’s Military Memorial of the loved ones of Palm Coast citizens who died in military conflicts.
Gold Star family members of two of the names inscribed on the monument were in attendance.
Tim and Carmen Stanford, and their daughter, Emma, laid a wreath in honor of their son, Army Sgt. Lukas T. Stanford.
Palm Coast City Council Member Cathy Heighter spoke about her son, Army Specialist Raheen Tyson Heighter, who died in Iraq 20 years ago.
“My heart still aches every time I think of that day they came to tell me that my son had been killed in Iraq,” she said.
“Never forget the high price of freedom,” Heighter said. “We owe these brave men and women who have given their lives for this country. We owe them a debt that we can never repay.”
Alfin also read the names of Marine Corps Lance Cpl. John T. Schmidt III, Marine Corps Sgt. Zachary J. Walters and Air Force Staff Sgt. Steven Martin O’Neill.
“To the family and friends of these fearless undaunted men, remember that all the members of this community share in your pride and honor for your loved ones,” Alfin said. “May they rest in peace, and may they feel in their souls that Palm Coast will never forget them.”
The Community Chorus of Palm Coast sang the national anthem at the beginning of the ceremony and “God Bless America” at the end.
Tom Maize of Bugles Across America played Taps. The Marine Corps League Flagler County Detachment 876 Palm Coast fired three rifle volleys in honor of the fallen heroes.
The Matanzas High School Army Junior ROTC provided the color guard.