OGDENSBURG — The ceremony was small in numbers but the sentiment was heartfelt as a small group of service representatives and city officials gathered to mark Memorial Day at the Ogdensburgh Cemetery.
This Memorial Day gathering, organized by former Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Allan E. Mooney, was closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We are not going to abandon our obligation to remember, mourn, honor and give homage to the courage and sacrifice given to protect our freedoms,” Master of Ceremonies Matthew J. Flynn, a Marine Corps league member said.
New York American Legion Vice Commander John McCullough read a proclamation from Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
“On this Memorial Day we mourn all those that were lost, give thanks for all those that were able to return home to their families and loved ones and we pray for the safety of those who remain ever vigilant as peacekeepers against threats to our freedom, our way of life and the safety and security of our homeland,” he said.
“One of the reasons we are all able to gather here for Memorial Day is the thankless hours that Allan Mooney has put into creating this event,” Mr. Flynn said. “For the last 30 years he has been the principal organizer of this event.”
Mr. Mooney read the Seaman’s Prayer which, in a normal year, is said while a wreath is placed in the St. Lawrence River.
While the official ceremony was closed, a number of people gathered at a distance to watch and pay honor.
“I don’t think that any of us thought we would live to see this few people in attendance,” Mr. Flynn said. “In all the years that I have done this, today’s ceremony means more to me than the others.”