Southern Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery - Union Grove, WI. (Photo: State DVA website) People are taking a little time out of their day today to remember our soldiers at cemeteries and ceremonies throughout the state as we observe a day of reflection. … at least that’s the hope of veterans officials.

“The Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs, we have ceremonies taking place throughout the state to help remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice on behalf of this country. And for those who served our country in its time of need and are no longer with us.”

That’s Anthony Hardie , Executive Assistant for the Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs. His boss, Veterans Secretary John Scocos, is spending this Memorial Day in the Middle East, along with about 3,000 other Wisconsin service members . Of those, about 1,800 are in active duty and the remaining roughly 1,200 are in the reserves. Hardie suggests you pause for a moment at 3:00pm for the fallen soldiers and the many GIs who are in harm’s way this very moment.

“The National Moment of Remembrance simply asks for all Americans across the country to pause in a moment of silence wherever they may be.”

Hardie will speak at a Memorial Day ceremony in Wisconsin’s Capital City at the Dane County Veterans Memorial Coliseum, along with Governor Jim Doyle , Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin and other dignitaries. There are several ceremonies taking place throughout the Badger State to honor the fallen soldiers with this year’s theme, “Land of the Free Because of the Brave.”

AUDIO: Jackie Johnson report (1:28 MP3)
Wisconsin Veterans Museum Director Richard Zeitlin talks about the origin of Memorial Day. It’s a holiday that evolved from America ‘s Civil War experience. (:39 MP3)

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