PHENIX CITY, Ala. (WTVM) - As Memorial Day weekend begins, veterans in the Chattahoochee Valley want you to reflect on the true meaning of the day.
Each year, the nation pauses on the last Monday in May to honor military soldiers who’ve paid the ultimate sacrifice.
Tim Saint is a retired active duty Army veteran and one of many members of Veterans of Foreign Wars in Phenix City who reflect on their fallen brothers Memorial Day weekend. Saint said when Memorial Day comes around, he and fellow veterans remember those who served with them.
“It’s about my brothers who didn’t come home, it’s about the guys who sacrificed everything that we all wrote that blank check for and they had to cash it in," said Saint.
People can buy tiles to decorate and display at the VFW. Saint chose to honor the five guys who didn’t come home in his company.
“The second tile I put up was for my brothers who didn’t come home in my very first combat operation and I had to list them all by name," said Saint.
One of Saint’s tiles honors four men in a gun jeep crew known as the Juliet 5 crew that passed, following an ambush in Grenada in 1983. He also has the name of Mark O Yamane, the first gunner in the 2nd platoon weapons. Saint said he was killed behind a truck closing in on Grenadian forces on a hilltop.
While some look at the day as a time to celebrate, others say Memorial Day is about the people who sacrificed their lives for their country.
“It’s not just my sacrifice. It’s the sacrifice of millions of others that have gone before me, that have served before my life and after my life. Without that, Memorial Day will mean nothing to no one," said retired Navy veteran Montana Marty N. Jones.