Graham’s American Volunteer Reserve provides the 21-gun salute at the 2013 Memorial Day ceremony at Pioneer Cemetery. This year’s service will
Graham's American Volunteer Reserve provides the 21-gun salute at the 2013 Memorial Day ceremony at Pioneer Cemetery. This year's service will begin at 11 a.m. at the Little Chapel in Pioneer Cemetery. (File photo)
The 2014 VFW Graham Memorial Post #8567 Memorial Day service in Graham will be filled with rememberance and appreciation for those who have sacrificed their lives for the United States in wars past and present.

The service begins at 11 a.m. at the Little Chapel in Pioneer Cemetery, and East Side Church of Christ Pastor Dorman Holub is providing the main address this year. When most people in Young County who know him hear the name Dorman Holub, “local historian” is likely the first phrase that comes to mind. In that spirit, Holub will be giving a speech entitled “Remember” at this year’s Memorial Day service in Graham.

Holub is a fitting choice, considering he assembled all of the names etched in the Young County Veteran’s Memorial on the Square in Graham, and his speech will encompass many topics.

“The day we call Memorial Day, now we have speeches and parades and flags and flowers, but I’m probably going to talk a little bit about the first Memorial Day that was in 1868,” Holub said. “I was going to tell stories about some of the veterans that were on the center section (of the Young County Veteran’s Memorial), and I’m also probably just going to talk about what it means to be a soldier.”

2014 also marks veteran Mike Downey’s second year as commander of the Graham VFW. Downey is a Graham native, and has so far spent a third of his life in the city where he was born. His military resume shows more than a few reasons why he has spent many years away from his hometown, and a few of the bullet points include 26 years of service in the Navy, as well as tours in Vietnam, Desert Storm and Bosnia.

As VFW commander, Downey is overseeing this year’s service, making sure all of the activities planned go off without a hitch.

“I conduct the ceremony at the cemetery, and I just enjoy doing it,” he said. “It’s something we need to do.”

Read the entire story in this weekend's Graham Leader.