Fort Mill, SC (WBTV) - As the country paused to honor our nation’s veterans today, so did the Town of Fort Mill.
First responders closed off part of U.S. 21 for the town’s ceremony at Veterans Park.
“What gets me is when I do talk about family,” said Keith Feeley, Post Commander of American Legion Post 43 Fort Mill. “It is a family,” added the Navy veteran as he talked about the men and women in our nation’s military.
Feeley says he couldn’t help but think of family as he spoke to the crowd at Veterans Park.
“I made jokes about the guys I was on the ship with 20 years ago, and we’re still in contact today,” said Feeley. “That does hit home.”
That’s because that greater family is all too familiar with the words service and sacrifice.
“We are all family,” said Guynn Savage, Fort Mill’s Mayor. “It unites us in knowing that someone is willing to die for us to be free every day.”
Those who helped lead the ceremony, which included the singing of the National Anthem, America the Beautiful, a 21-gun rifle volley and the playing of taps, emphasized it’s important to not only pause on Veterans Day, but to remember that service every day.
“You look out there, and you don’t know who the veterans are until the mayor asked them to raise their hand,” said Feeley. “It’s the guy next door. It’s the woman down the street -- you don’t know who they are because they don’t wear shirts, they don’t wear the cover like I have on right now, on a daily basis. So, you don’t know who they are, but it’s important to appreciate them.”
Organizers also emphasized the difference between Veterans Day and Memorial Day, as well. Memorial Day honors those who made the ultimate sacrifice while Veterans Day honors everyone who has served in our country’s military. While not everyone has made the ultimate sacrifice, as Commander Feeley put it, all veterans were willing to, if it was required.