HENDERSON, Ky. (WEHT) – As more festivals and other annual events return to the Tri-State calendar, so do some events honoring our region’s veterans.
Among those is the Henderson Memorial Day cross display at Central Park, one of the largest in the region.
You could hear the names of those being honored as their crosses were set up outside the historic courthouse. They’re setting up now for future moments of silence to remember those who served.
“It’s good work,” says Chazz Audas, a student at North Middle School in Henderson.
For these students helping put the crosses up, it’s more than work.
“It’s an honor because you get to help all the fallen veterans, and stuff like that,” says Clay Roberts, an 8th grader at North Middle School.
The 5,500 cross display started going up on the courthouse lawn after last year’s display was canceled due to worries over the pandemic. Organizers say a combination of lack of physical distancing and worries over someone becoming ill while at the display lead to last year’s cancellation and leaving a hole in the community’s heart.
“It was empty. Our park was empty. People would ask, ‘Why?’ and well, it was very disappointing,” said Jim Hanley of the American Legion Post 40 Honor Guard. He also says they decided to return the display for this year about three months ago after pandemic conditions started improving.
“When I heard things were getting better, the masks and COVID was going down, so I was hoping it would get down to where it would happen,” he says.
Volunteers say all 5,500 crosses could be up as soon as this Wednesday and the display will be up through the first week after Memorial Day.
“I think it’s going to be beautiful,” says Audas.
“I think it’s going to be real nice,” adds Luke Humphrey, an 8th grader at North Middle School.
(This story was originally published on May 10, 2021)