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Light turn out at Port Hudson's Memorial Day celebration
ZACHARY - Dozens gathered Monday at the Port Hudson National Cemetery in Zachary. Far less than ceremonies before the pandemic.
"We're currently going through a lot in this country, and a day like today, we need to be reminded—everyone needs to be reminded—of those that came before us," Eugenia Simmons, Secretary of the Louisiana Military Cemetery Complex, said.
Keisha Nettervile, the Superintendent of Schools in East Feliciana Parish, was the guest speaker. She has a special connection to Port Hudson—her grandfather was a soldier.
"He was a US Army Veteran who served in the Korean War. He's buried here today along with my grandmother," Netterville said.
Linda Jordan and her daughter Luchan Myles also have connections at the cemetery. They have five family members buried here, including Jordan's father.
"We just love coming to the ceremony to know that he fought a good war in the service in World War II," Jordan said.
The family hasn't been able to gather at Port Hudson since 2019.
"It's been a trying time. We made our way through. It's been two years since we've been able to have a ceremony here because of COVID," Myles said.
There's more than 8,000 graves at this cemetery. It's filled to capacity.
The only room left at Port Hudson is for the spouses of soldiers buried here and cremations.
An American flag is placed on each grave, making sure none of the service members are forgotten.
"In ceremonies like this, it reminds us that we didn't forget them, that we are taking care of them and they will forever be taken care of," Simmons said.
Graves in the cemetery date back to the Civil War. Soldiers who fought for the south and north are buried there.
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