2016-06-02 / Front Page

Honoring our heroes

Photos by Lania Rocha

For some, Memorial Day 2016 was an extra day off work to have a cook-out or work in the yard. But hundreds of people in Swartz Creek and Gaines also took some time out of the day to gather together in honor of those brave men and women who have defended the United States and protected the rights and freedoms of her people. Ceremonies took place at the Veterans Memorial in Swartz Creek, and at the Gaines Veterans Memorial Park in the village of Gaines. In Swartz Creek, speakers urged citizens to reconnect with America’s military by inviting veterans to talk about their experiences, and to honor veterans with a minute of silence at 3 p.m. every year on Memorial Day. Among the folks who attended the Swartz Creek service were Greg Maul of Gaines Township, Don Austin of Lennon and Nina Canfield of Swartz Creek (above). At the gathering in Gaines, speakers prayed for peace. Those in attendance included (top right) Ernest Johnson, acting commander of AmVets Post 2223 of Durand, and Dennis Martin, commander of VFW Post 2272 of Durand; (right) Dave “Turtle” LaBree, a member of the Barons Motorcycle Club, one of four groups helping build the village’s memorial to the 680 Gaines-area veterans who served and sacrificed; and Jim Shurte, a U.S. Navy veteran from Flint.

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