By Whitney Vickers
FAIRBORN — Fairborn community members gathered in Fairfield Cemetery Monday morning to remember fallen service members.
The ceremony, hosted by the American Legion Post 526, included a new tradition this year — Post 526 Chaplain and Event Master of Ceremonies Roger Sloan read a roll call of Fairborn service members who never made it home. It included individuals from the Civil War, World War I, World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War and the Persian Gulf War.
Sloan acknowledged that the list may not be complete at this point and he asked that individuals reach out to Post 526 Commander Chuck Knaub so that their names be added to the roll call.
“I hope when they (attendees) leave this ceremony, they’ll continue thinking of all the veterans,” Sloan said. “Those who lost their lives in battle, passed away and those who are currently serving, and keep that with them all year long.”
Col. Trisha Sexton, vice commander of the National Air and Space Intelligence Center at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, served as the guest speaker at the ceremony.
“Our nation is special,” Sexton said. “Not every country in the world honors their fallen like we do. [Memorial Day] reminds us that those who wear the uniform write a blank check to America and some people end up cashing that check in early — up to and including their lives. It’s important for us to remember them and remember what they gave for our freedoms.”
The Fairborn High School ROTC, Wright State University Color Guard, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base Honor Guard and Post 526 Auxiliary Color Guard, stood together for the event. The Fairborn High School Marching Band played the National Anthem. The ceremony allowed individuals to place wreaths below the flag to acknowledge the fallen. The ceremony wrapped up with a three-volley salute and taps.
Post 526 started Memorial Day with a ceremony hosted in partnership with Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6861 at Byron Cemetery. After the ceremony at Fairfield Cemetery concluded, Post 526 hosted an open house at the hall.