Large crowd honors Memorial Day

·2 min read

May 30—KERNERSVILLE — John Endredy said the gratitude expressed by the large crowd that attended the Memorial Day ceremony Monday at the Carolina Field of Honor shouldn't be reserved for one day out of the year.

It's a sentiment that should endure always as a foundation for remembering men and women who give their lives to preserve the way of life cherished in America.

"Liberty will always be purchased with blood," said Endredy, who made the drive with his family from the eastern Guilford County community of Whitsett to attend the annual service.

His father, also named John Endredy, served in the U.S. Army for five years after immigrating from Hungary in 1956 after he took part in the uprising against the Soviet Union-backed communist government of the eastern European nation. Endredy still has the expedited citizenship orders for his father issued by the administration of President Dwight Eisenhower that allowed him to come to America.

Endredy was hoping to find the decorative brick with his father's name near the U.S. Army monument that he purchased to honor his father's service.

Organizers expected between 2,500 and 3,000 people to attend the Carolina Field of Honor service. Members of the crowd showed up more than an hour before the ceremony began at 11 a.m. on a warm, sunny morning.

Many visitors wore red, white and blue clothing or hats signifying their outfits for military service.

During the ceremony, the Rev. Frank Thomas provided the invocation and sang the national anthem. Thomas, pastor of Mount Zion Baptist Church in High Point, has become a fixture at recent Memorial Day services at the Carolina Field of Honor.

Thomas, who served 25 years in the Army, said he's proud to take part in the program.

"I've had comrades in arms give their life for their country," Thomas told The High Point Enterprise. "I want to honor their sacrifice."

The Carolina Field of Honor was one of several Memorial Day services in the area on Monday. The 18th annual High Point Memorial Day Service took place downtown at the corner of S. Main and High streets in an area featuring military monuments.

The High Point Memorial Day Service is organized by Nick Ruden, who started the annual event when he was a teenager. Ruden is a graduate of High Point University.

About 100 people attended the service, Ruden told The Enterprise. The High Point Memorial Day Service was scheduled to include the Randolph County Honor Guard, the Guilford Courthouse Fife and Drum and a laying of a wreath to recognize those who served in the military and gave the supreme sacrifice for their nation.

pjohnson@hpenews.com — 336-888-3528 — @HPEpaul