Photo by Sue Watson
Charles Morrow (left, Air Force) pins a fellow veteran, Randy Shipp (Army), who was standing beside him for the ceremony.

Photos by Sue Watson
Sharon Goodman-Hill sings the National Anthem. Also pictured are Larry Miller, Charles Terry, Robert Davis, David McElreath and Bill Stone.

Samira Wright, Assareyah Bryson and Joshua Manning are pictured with Quila Smith, fourth grade teacher at Holly Springs Middle School.

Juanita Dillard pins Cletus Lester, Kosovo, Navy.

Gene Skelton, Purple Heart, U.S. Army 11th Cav., Vietnam

Bernita Fountain Lowe pins Wallace Freeman, U.S. Army, draftee, Vietnam.

City, county honor veterans

A joyous crowd of friends and families of veterans, along with school children, participated in the Veterans Day celebration in Holly Springs Friday.

The joint ceremony put on by the City of Holly Springs and the Marshall County Board of Super­visors brings tears to many eyes and smiles to faces each year. The event is held on the courthouse lawn amid fanfare, songs, prayer, speeches, and includes the pinning of veterans with flags to honor their selfless service to their country.

This year no veterans of World War I were in attendance. Two World War II veterans, Clyde Boga and David Caldwell, were recognized.

Standing while waiting for the service to begin, Caldwell quipped he preferred to stand while waiting for the program to begin and take every opportunity to stand while he has the good health to do so. He laughed heartily.

This year elected officials pinned each group representing the following wars – World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm, Desert Shield, Kosovo, Bosnia, Afghanis­tan, and other theaters of service.

“Bless the veterans around the globe,” prayed Bishop Robert Davis, of Davis Temple Church.

Holly Springs Police Chief Dwight Harris welcomed guests thanking men and women currently in the armed services and those who served in the past, “That preserves our nation and freedom.”

Harris has a son in the U.S. Navy.

Circuit clerk Lucy Carpenter praised the Holly Springs Intermediate School children who encircled the veterans and their families and friends.

“I’m so glad to see so many students,” she said. “I think our continued freedom depends on you.”

Carpenter addressed veterans.

“No words can express our gratitude to you, so we gather 98 years later (to celebrate Armistice Day, ending World War I). There is nothing we can do to thank you enough. Enjoy your day.”

Charles Terry, representing the Marshall County Board of Supervisors, paid tribute to “all our veterans who served in dedication, who fought in the major conflicts, you deserve our thanks today and every day,” he said.

Alderman Christy Owens celebrated her neighbor and 1961 Holly Springs High School graduate Charles Morrow’s service to his country. He enlisted in the Air Force in March 1966.

Master Sgt. Morrow served in Southeast Asia from 1967 to 1972 as pararescue specialist and medic. He was trained for worldwide deployment and received three Silver Stars, five Distinguished Flying Crosses and 23 Air Medals for his service in Vietnam. Morrow flew fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft during his 20-plus years in service. He retired December 31, 1986.

“I’m proud to say he’s my neighbor,” Owens said. “Thank you, Mr. Morrow, for your service.”

David Hughes McElreath, a native of Oxford and Ole Miss graduate, served in the U.S. Marine Corps as an infantry officer. He was the guest speaker for the ceremony.

His overseas tours during his 29 years of service included tours in Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Bosnia, Kosovo, Eastern Europe and Afghanistan, Panama, and Grenada.

He also served as commanding general of the Mississippi State Guard from 2013 to 2016.

McElreath is professor of legal studies at Ole Miss.

He received numerous military awards and decorations.

In his comments, McElreath praised the youth present at the ceremony, saying they will be the future replacement for lawyers, teachers, doctors, and people in all walks of life.

In his years of services in Vietnam, Korea and Afghanistan, there were people who wanted to do harm to the United States, he said..

In World War I, many of the sons and daughters of Marshall County put on the uniform, and came home to live quietly among us, unrecognized,  the professor said.

To the young, he said, “You are the future leaders. It will come much quicker than you realize.

“You will be among the heroes sitting under a tent (being recognized). One or two of you will be sitting on this stage. Understand it is not a sacrifice you will make, but a privilege to serve. May God keep you safe.”

Rep. John Faulkner, who served 13 years in the armed forces as a medic, reminded those present that freedom is not free.

“Somebody made the ultimate sacrifice,” he said.

Fourth grade teacher Quila Smith came to the stage by request to sing “Amazing Grace.”

Holly Springs South Reporter

P.O. Box 278
Holly Springs, MS 38635
PH: (662) 252-4261
FAX: (662) 252-3388
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