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'Remember the ones who fought for us,' Volunteers place thousands of flags at veteran graves

Posted at 8:43 PM, May 23, 2024

APPLETON (NBC 26) — Just under 5,000 American flags were placed at the graves of veterans at Highland Memorial Park. Boy and Girl Scout volunteers helped in preparation for the park's Memorial Day program.

  • In Appleton, thousands of American flags are waving to mark the final resting places of veterans
  • One Highland Memorial Park staff member says Memorial Day is their busiest time of year
  • Hear from some of the young volunteers in the video above

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story, with additional details for the web)

In preparation for Memorial Day, thousands of flags will be placed at the final resting places of veterans. I'm Pari Apostolakos reporting at Appleton Highland Memorial Park.

"I'm here at the Memorial Park today because I'm setting out flags [because] of the people who fought in the military and the Navy," Nine-year-old Boy Scout Wyatt Fenske said.

Hundreds of Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts help place flags at nearly 5,000 veterans' graves.

Thursday afternoon, Appleton Highland Memorial Park hosted their flag laying event to prepare for Monday, which is when they will host a Memorial Day event.

"We're so grateful that [veterans] provided such a sacrifice, that we're able to be in a free country," Heather Fraid, Appleton Highland Memorial Park Office Manager said. "So, we want to be able to humbly place flags on each of their graves so that they can be honored."

Fraid says Memorial Day is probably their busiest time of year and she finds it to be the most meaningful.

She said Thursday's volunteer event is all about showing gratitude to veterans and their family members.

"We're just humbly honored that we are able to do just such a small thing for the veterans out here as well as get the kids and the Boy Scouts and the community all involved," Fraid said. "And, you know, hopefully, sort of teach them or educate them [on] the sacrifice that these veterans and current military do for us."

"It's important for us to come here and plant these flags so we can remember the ones who fought for us and protected us," Nine-year-old Boy Scout River Cox said.

At 2 p.m. on Memorial Day Fraid says the park will host a program with guest speakers, prayer and a reading of names of the veterans buried at Appleton Highland Memorial Park. In Appleton, Pari Apostolakos, NBC 26.