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Somber Strains Herald Remembrance At Korean War Memorial In Old City

A wreath laying at the Korean War Memorial in Old City during a Memorial Day remembrance ceremony. (credit: John Ostapkovich)

A wreath laying at the Korean War Memorial in Old City during a Memorial Day remembrance ceremony. (credit: John Ostapkovich)

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By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Among Philadelphia’s Memorial Day observances was one at the Korean War Memorial in Old City.

From bagpipers setting the scene to an operatic mother and daughter duo singing the national anthem, this hit the proper notes, a bright sunny day framing the black granite monument that lists area residents who did not return from Korea.

“The 600 names on the wall,” Mayor Michael Nutter said, “the thousands who have been affected on this wall, the Vietnam Veterans wall and walls all over the United States.”

Former Navy pilot and CBS3 meteorologist Tom Lamaine says he avoids saying Happy Memorial Day.

“I don’t know about you, but who we are remembering certainly did not bring happy moments for those who lost family or friends,” he says. “”Where else would we be gathering today if not for tributes like this, memorials so we will not forget.”

Tom Lomaine speaks during a Memorial Day remembrance ceremony at the Korean War Memorial in Old City. (credit: John Ostapkovich)

Tom Lomaine speaks during a Memorial Day remembrance ceremony at the Korean War Memorial in Old City. (credit: John Ostapkovich)

E. Harris Baum, the honorary consul general of Korea, says it is a simple, yet sad equation.

“Freedom has a cause,” Baum says. “It is a cause that requires a price, and that price sometimes calls for the ultimate sacrifice of life.”

The colors were carried by the Lenape High School Junior ROTC, one member of which is headed to West Point.

The event MC reminded everyone that these lives weren’t given. They were taken violently.

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