TRACY, Calif. –
As the sacrifices of nation’s war dead of past and present conflicts around the world were being honored on Memorial Day, the American military must continue to be ready to respond to a number of challenges in many parts of the world.
This was told to some 300 people who attended Monday’s Memorial Day program at Tracy Cemetery by Marine Corps Col. Andre T. Harrell, commander of DLA Distribution San Joaquin.
“In today’s ever-changing geopolitical climate, we still must be ready to fight abroad,” he said. “Our military must remain formidable and lethal in order to prevent chaos, disruption and indiscriminate mass destruction of peaceful societies.”
Harrell said that restoring military readiness, strengthening alliances and reforming efforts to modernize forces “pave the way for the U.S. to remain an international presence for equality, human rights, fair trade, globalization education and economic opportunity.”
Patriotic music for the program, conducted by the Tracy American Legion and VFW posts, was provided by the Tracy Community Band. Mayor Bob Rickman read a Memorial Day proclamation.
A 21-gun salute by the combined American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars honor guard and the sounding of taps by trumpeter Greg Wright closed the program.
A wreath-laying ceremony followed at the Tracy War Memorial, where the names on the monument of the 57 Tracy victims of wars of the past century were read by Vietnam Army veteran Ray Morelos. A bell was wrung by George Briggs, a Navy veteran of World War II, Korea and Vietnam, to signal their deaths.