St. Landry Parish Veterans Memorial Formally Dedicated
More than 700 people, many dressed in red, white and blue and quite a few in full military uniform, attended the long-awaited dedication of the St. Landry Parish Veterans Memorial this week. The dedication ceremony at the memorial, located at 5348 La. 182 immediately south of Opelousas, took more than two hours. Despite that, nobody left before the sun set Wednesday, when volunteers pulled the cord to unveil the memorial and the bronze statue of a kneeling soldier that tops it. Engraved in gold on the memorial are the names of every man and woman in St. Landry Parish who has died in service to their nation from World War I to the present. Rev. James Brady, pastor of St. Landry Catholic Church, opened the ceremony with a prayer of thanks to these fallen veterans and everyone else who has served. “We must never forget the gifts given to us by those willing to serve,” Brady prayed. Keynote speaker for the program was retired Gen. John Basicilia Jr., who led a local National Guard unit in Baghdad, Iraq, during 2004 and 2005.
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