MOFFAT VETERANS MM 01

Sabrina Young speaks during a VFW Post 1820 Veterans Day Ceremony at the Moffat Cemetery in Temple on Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019. Michael Miller/Telegram

Members of the Moffat Cemetery Association and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 1820 met in the cemetery pavilion Saturday morning to honor veterans buried in the cemetery.

Sabrina Young, owner of Young’s Daughters Funeral Home in Temple, told a short history of Veterans Day. Post Senior Vice Commander Mike Fuller spoke briefly and read a proclamation from President Donald Trump.

Young said Nov. 11 marked the end of World War I in 1918 and was first called Armistice Day, “in honor of those who died in the country’s service.” In 1954, after World War II and the Korean War, the name was changed to Veterans Day

“As we celebrate Veterans Day,” Fuller read from the proclamation, “we pause to recognize the brave men and women who have fearlessly and faithfully worked to defend the United States and our freedom. Their devotion to duty and patriotism deserves the respect and admiration of our grateful nation each and every day. We are forever thankful for the many heroes among us who have bravely fought around the world to protect us all.”

The proclamation continued: As commander in chief of our heroic armed forces, I humbly thank our veterans and their families for their willingness to answer the call of duty and for their unwavering love of country. Today we pledge always to fight for those who have fought for us, our veterans, who represent the best of America.”

Young gave families the opportunity to sign up for military markers. The goal for the cemetery is to place markers for veterans who do not have them, she said. There are about 195 veterans buried in the cemetery that lack emblems, markers or headstones, she said.

Ruth Beck, MCA treasurer, said there may be more veteran graves without military markers. About 2,000 people are buried in the cemetery and the records are incomplete, she said.

The cemetery has rented ground radar equipment to search the older portion of the graveyard, she said. In the coming year, the caretakers will try to locate as many unmarked graves as possible and mark them, “even if we don’t know who is buried there,” she said, in order to locate the empty sites.

The newer portion of the cemetery is filling up, she said, and the association hasn’t been able to acquire additional land.

“We’re kind of land-locked,” she said.

As part of the ceremony, Young read the names of veterans buried in the cemetery. Victoria Howard, MCA board member, thanked the visitors and VFW Post 1820 members for joining in the “ceremony and tribute to all the veterans buried here.”

“Let us remember all the men and women who have paid the price for freedom,” Post Chaplain James Sneed said in the closing prayer.