‘You never get over it:’ Jacksonville holds annual Memorial Day observance event

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A solemn remembrance Monday morning as the city of Jacksonville held its annual Memorial Day observance event, honoring the memories of all who have paid the ultimate sacrifice.

“This whole ceremony, it’s one of the largest in the country, our [memorial] wall here, second largest in the country,” Jacksonville City Council President Ron Salem said at Monday’s ceremony. “We honor our veterans here in town and particularly ones that have paid the ultimate sacrifice.”


Memorial Day serves as a reminder beyond the weekend barbecues and beach visits that the true meaning of the holiday is remembering those who have died defending our country and our freedoms. All gave some, some gave all.

Marvin Johnson’s brother, Charles Johnson, was one of those who gave all, dying in the line of duty during the Vietnam War, killed by mortar fire at just 21.

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“I was 16 years old; he was 21 years old when he died,” Marvin Johnson told Action News Jax. “I’ve been a supporter, it made me a supporter and a person who appreciates our military and what they do throughout this, for this country, throughout the world.”

For Johnson and many others, Memorial Day holds an even heavier weight and heavier burden, highlighting the need to keep those brave men and women from Jacksonville and all across the nation who laid down their lives, forever in our memory and forever honored each and every Memorial Day.

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“All of those who have given their lives and the families that have endured what has to be endured for all the years, you never get over it,” Johnson added. “It’s just always in your heart and your mind.”

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