MOUND CITY (WSIL) -- Memorial Day and the weekend leading up to the holiday are a time to remember our fallen heroes, and a group of local veterans did just that.
Members of the VFW Post 3455 came together Saturday morning to hold a ceremony for service members who died while serving the country.
The event took place in Mound City at a statue honoring those from the area who fought in World War II and attracted a small crowd that maintained their distance while paying their respects.
Normally, the ceremony takes place at the Mound City National Cemetery, which was established after more than 1,600 Civil War soldiers died at a hospital that once stood nearby. Hundreds of unknown solders are also laid to rest there.
VFW member Clarence Caraker says plans were changed due to social distancing guidelines.
"We decided to hold a smaller deal here," the veteran explains. "We don't like to get the national cemeteries in trouble."
Caraker opened the ceremony with remarks about the significance of the holiday.
"Memorial Day is a day that we honor ours that never came home," he adds. "That's the reason we decided to do a little ceremony today."
Others in attendance include VFW member Mark Haddick who offered similar sentiments about the day.
"It's been so long since we've been able to get together in any kind of form," Haddick says. "But, it's a real pleasure to be able to do something like this; it's an honor."
Southern Illinois native General John A. Logan called for a national day to remember fallen Civil War soldiers, which eventually became Memorial Day.