BOZEMAN, Mont. - Memorial Day is just around the corner and folks with American Legion Post 14 are making sure local veterans are remembered.
Thursday morning we watched flag after flag placed on grave sites of veterans at Bozeman's Sunset Hills Cemetery. We followed along with American Legion members Len Albright and Dave Harvey as they planned out their day.
With them every step of the way was a binder. It has all of the information from city-county records, as well as the cemetery.
"Now we know 2,147 known," said Albright.
Every flag represents an American who served our country. In the two hours we tagged along with Albright and Harvey, an estimated 200 flags were placed, and every single one had a story to tell.
"U.S. Army, born January 28, 1887," said Harvey.
Harvey explains that reading about those veterans who have passed, and learning what they had to endure serving and protecting their country is one of the most rewarding parts of the experience.
"To me, that's the ultimate sacrifice, and we need to remember those people, we need to honor them," said Harvey.
The grave sites range from the Civil War to modern wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
"Especially WWI and WWII, they were only 20 years old, and 21, 25 years old that were killed in action, and you see that and go 'wow,'" said Albright.
Laying all the flags takes two days, but the volunteers say it's worth it to remember those who served our country.
On Monday there are several events happening for Memorial Day in Bozeman. The American Legion is hosting a free breakfast from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. At 9:30 a.m. the parade will roll through downtown Bozeman. The parade kicks off at 7th Avenue, and will end at Wallace. At 11 a.m. the memorial service begins at Sunset Hills Cemetery.