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Michigan National Guard and Marines lay ceremonial wreaths in East Lansing for Memorial Day

Marine lays wreath at one end of the monument
Jenna Braford
Marine lays down one wreath at Lieutenant Skinner's monument

East Lansing residents and active-duty military gathered outside the Hannah Community Center for a wreath laying ceremony Wednesday.

The event, just days before Memorial Day, honored the many sacrifices made by service members and veterans.

The taps bugle call trumpeted across the silent group as U.S. Marine Corps and Michigan National Guard members lead the ceremony.

The Lansing area Marines placed wreaths decorated with red, white and blue flowers at the Medal of Honor Memorial and Veterans Monument in front of the building. The monument is dedicated 2nd Lt. Sherrod E. Skinner Jr., a Marine Corps officer who gave his life in the Korean War.

2nd Lt. Skinner, a man who grew up in East Lansing, posthumously received the Congressional Medal of Honor for his acts of valiance in the war. He courageously protected his men under heavy artillery fire, even leaping on a grenade to carry out his duty.

“Memorial Day means many things to many people. But it rings more true for those who have lost loved ones,” said Brig. Gen. Scott House of the Michigan National Guard, who also serves as East Lansing’s director of public works.

“And also for veterans who’ve lost friends and more.”

Brig. Gen. House, who was deployed in Kuwait in 2003 and Iraq in 2007, emphasized the importance of supporting mental health resources for veterans, highlighting veteran suicide as being a “true concern.”

“The war never stops, really. We always remember those who have fallen and those who are buried,” he said. “But we have to remember those that came home and the help that they will need.”

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