Florence remembers the fallen on Memorial Day

FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - More than 12,000 people who served our country are buried in Florence National Cemetery.

To help preserve history and take it into the future, a new veteran's affairs building is in the works for the area.

Dozens of veterans and those who wanted to pay respect for those who have served, came out to Florence National Cemetery on Monday.

"The discussion today was about making sure we remember Memorial Day for what it is and not for the sales they have up town," said Randy Godbold with Florence County Veterans Affairs.

Local veterans said they are working to make sure people don't forget the men and women who gave their lives for the many freedoms we have today.

"If you seem somebody wearing a baseball cap that says Vietnam Veteran or WW2 Veteran or something like that, take a minute and just tell them thank you," said Colonel Barry Wingard

It's those veterans still with us that many here hope a new building will support.

"We're going to have a new Veteran Administration Building; it's going to be built in conjunction with the cemetery here," said Godbold.

In addition, to administrative needs for veterans the $1.2 million building will provide many other services.

"The new building is going to have a place where the children can come see the history of the cemetery, with some touch tone screens and stuff to go through the History of the Cemetery," said Godbold.

County leaders also said the new space will have an indoor area where funerals can take place in the rain or shine.

"We are going to have a lot of artifacts from the cemetery in there and it's going to be an educational thing and I think it's going to do really good," said Godbold.

County leaders said by highlighting this national treasure in our area, more tourism dollars should come in, but more importantly those who fought for our country will have an even bigger memorial

That new veteran's affairs building will be located near the cemetery here and is being funded by the new penny, tax payers here in Florence County voted for last November.

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