Hundreds gather in the rain at Louisville cemeteries to pay trib - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Hundreds gather in the rain at Louisville cemeteries to pay tribute on Memorial Day

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Crowds gathered at Cave Hill Cemetery Monday for a 21-gun salute and the playing of TAPS -- among thousands of white tombstones.

People of all ages gathered to pay tribute to those who served our nation at both Cave Hill and Zachary Taylor cemeteries. Despite the rain, hundreds of people gathered under umbrellas to remember those they have lost.

"We're here to honor our veterans, especially our fallen veterans who gave their lives for our country and we just want to do this out of respect for all of them," VFW District 6 Commander Dwight Riggle said.

Confederate flags and American flags line the tombstones as Memorial Day remembers and honors all military service members. The Confederate flags are placed by the graves of Civil War soldiers who fought for the Confederacy.

Some came to pay tribute without knowing the fallen personally, others came to honor loved ones and this day is never easy.

"My father is buried here, I lost him about 17 years ago and only as I get older, do I appreciate how much he did for our country," Russell Cannon said.

Cannon and others walked around the cemetery, reading the tombstones and learning about these men and women.

"Over here we had a nurse, there's all sorts of different people who support our war efforts and we need to honor them all," he said.

The ceremony was first enacted to honor Union and Confederate soldiers, then was extended after World War I to honor all Americans died and all wars.

"I lost a couple friends -- it's just -- I'm glad I did what other people couldn't do and I didn't for the same reason. I did it for the freedom," Iraq War veteran Mark Piercy said.

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