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    Remembering the fallen at St. Mihiel

    Honoring the fallen

    Photo By Sarah Loicano | The more than 4,150 Americans resting at the St. Mihiel, France, cemetery, were...... read more read more

    On Memorial Day we reflect upon the selfless service of Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines who gave their lives in defense of the nation throughout U.S history.
    American and French citizens paid their respects to World War I heroes during a remembrance ceremony at the St. Mihiel American Cemetery May 28.

    Brigadier General Dieter Bareihs, Director of Plans, Programs and Analysis for U.S. Air Forces in Europe and U.S. Air Forces Africa, provided the Memorial Day address in memory of the men and women who died answering our nation’s call.

    “As we gather on this hallow ground people will gather in cemeteries across the United States and elsewhere overseas to remember to mourn and to honor the legacy of those who gave all to preserve our nation and the freedoms we hold so dear,” said Bareihs.

    This year, Memorial Day is especially meaningful because 2017 marks the centennial of U.S. entry into World War I. In the 17 months of U.S. participation in WWI, 4.7 million Americans served in the war and 116,516 lost their lives. Of those who died in the fighting, tens of thousands remain buried in U.S. military cemeteries across Europe. The centennial milestone offers a historic opportunity to commemorate America’s sons and daughters who fought for peace, liberty and stability in Europe.

    The St. Mihiel American cemetery is a WWI cemetery and is one of the 20 permanent American military cemeteries in Europe maintained by the American Battle Monuments Commission. There are 4,153 burials in the cemetery, most of whom lost their lives while fighting in the offensive that resulted in the reduction of the St. Mihiel salient that threatened Paris.

    “United in a common cause and bound together by the United States flag, men and women of all backgrounds, races and faiths throughout U.S. history have reflected in wartime the exceptionalism of America – and continue to do so in everlasting rest,” said Bareihs. “In 2017, as in 1917, we stand together with NATO Allies and partners to ensure a Europe that is whole, free, prosperous and at peace. We owe the tens of thousands of Americans resting in endless peace on European soil nothing less.’”

    The ceremony also included speeches by Mr. Jean-Calude Dotte, Thiaucourt Mayor, Amy Westling, U.S. Consul, Strasbourg, taps by the United States Air Forces in Europe Band, and a U.S. Air Force honor guard platoon formation. Students of the Ferdinand Buisson college-Thiaucourt read the poem “The Raindrops on Your Old Tin Hat” by 2nd Lt. J.H. Wickersham, a Medal of Honor recipient lying in rest at St. Mihiel American Cemetery.

    On this Memorial Day we honor the sacrifice of the men and women who fought for our freedom and remember those who were unable to return to the shores of their homeland because of their selflessness, courage, and determination.



    Date Taken: 05.28.2017
    Date Posted: 05.30.2017 05:09
    Story ID: 235672
    Location: FR

    Web Views: 253
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