Record numbers attend West TN Veterans Cemetery Memorial Day pro - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Record numbers attend West TN Veterans Cemetery Memorial Day program

(SOURCE: WMC Action News 5) (SOURCE: WMC Action News 5)
(SOURCE: WMC Action News 5) (SOURCE: WMC Action News 5)
(SOURCE: WMC Action News 5) (SOURCE: WMC Action News 5)
(SOURCE: WMC Action News 5) (SOURCE: WMC Action News 5)
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) -

For many, Memorial Day means celebrating heroes, bravery, and freedom at the West Tennessee Veterans Cemetery. Representatives said 2016 saw the highest number of people ever to attend the ceremony aimed at honoring the lives of America's heroes.

This Memorial Day, thousands came to veteran's cemetery to take a moment and celebrate the military men and women that served our country. According to Martin Hoffert, vice chairman of the West Tennessee Veteran's Cemetery Support group, the attendance broke records.

"This is the most we've ever had," Hoffert said.

He said the numbers are overwhelming. 

"We absolutely ran out of parking," Hoffert said. "We estimate the entire property, with the program and the people in cemeteries, to be about 5,000 people."

Hoffert said that's mostly because more young people are dying overseas. 

"A lot of young kids killed in Afghanistan and Iraq still have hundreds of friends," he said.

It was the volunteers who put in the time and effort to make this day special for all those who attended.

"I think it's a demonstration of everything young men and young women should experience," Jim Rock said. 

Rock is a volunteer and a 25-year veteran. Rock joined with other volunteers and Boy Scouts spent hours preparing for the day.

"The Scout Masters and the scouts go into the field. There are currently almost 21,000 graves to install the flags in about an hour and a half," Rock said.

The flags are donated from families of veterans and lead up to the ceremony tent.

"The community supported the vets and it's not just veterans supporting veterans," Hoffert said.

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