The ultimate sacrifice. That phrase helps represent the selflessness of each and every man and woman who has stood up for the freedom of millions.
To honor those brave heroes, every year since 1963, Turlock takes a moment each Memorial Day to gather and remember all of those lost in wars.
On Monday, hundreds of veterans, family members, and patriots gathered at the Turlock Memorial Park and Funeral Home to make sure those lost get a chance to live on.
“Whether it’s looking a gravestone here after the ceremony and seeing that name and having that feeling, or whether it’s just driving in here and seeing all of the flag, make sure that you hold onto that — that point that makes you remember what the ultimate sacrifice was,” said Mayor Gary Soiseth.
Soiseth, who spent four years overseas with the Department of Defense, said the memory of flag draped coffins and fallen soldiers being sent home stays with him.
“That’s the feeling that I have that brings me back to that point of remembrance,” said Soiseth. “That feeling, I pray, never goes away and I don’t think it will."
Assemblymember Kristin Olsen spoke about the importance of remembering the Gold Star families, but also about how close this year’s Memorial Day hits home for her and her family. Olsen said her nephew was recently commissioned to the United States Marine Corp.
“Seeing that moving ceremony and what he is now doing in service to his country has made Memorial Day so much more real,” said Olsen.
Admiral Mike Seward of the VFW Post 5059 added that the United States, like no other country in the world, honors their veterans and fallen soldiers.
“For as long as the red, white, and blue flies above our nation, at least one day a year — this day, Memorial Day — they’ll be people like you see here in Turlock Memorial Park who have served and served honorably be recognized again as a veteran."
Mayor Gary Soiseth represented the City of Turlock at the 2015 Turlock Memorial Day Service.
Carlos Montanez Jr., Navy JROTC Instructor at Turlock High School, was the guest speaker at this year’s Turlock Memorial Day Service.
Assemblymember Kristin Olsen (R-Modesto) shared the importance of remembering the Gold Star families.
Admiral Mike Seward of the VFW Post 5059 said the United States remembers its veterans and fallen soldiers like no other country in the world.
The Hilmar Community Band at the 2015 Turlock Memorial Day Service.