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Wednesday, June 5, 2013
On May 25, I was at the Old City Cemetery on Tazewell Avenue. There were about 30 people there. They were cleaning the headstones, removing weeds, repairing the headstones that were falling over
The Sons of Confederate Veterans and the people of the Belmont community were there to honor the Confederate soldiers and the founding fathers of Roanoke, and to have the cemetery ready for Memorial Day.
The next day, The Roanoke Times carried the article “Gettysburg: They walked through blood,” by Steve Szkotak, about Pickett’s Charge, which happened on July 3, 1863. Szkotak wrote that the Confederates attempted to advance over fields for three-quarters of a mile.
Not only did they attempt it, they crossed it. They made it to the wall.
Szkotak also said the Battle of Gettysburg forever bruised the psyche of the South. The South went on to fight for another year and a half.
The famed Stonewall Brigade went on to fight in World War I, in the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, where it got its motto, “Ever Forward,” for not giving an inch of ground back to the enemy.
Who can forget the greatest land invasion ever made, when the Stonewall Brigade and its Bedford Boys spearheaded the charge at Omaha Beach?
The Sons of Confederate Veterans who were cleaning the City Cemetery were the 28th Virginia Infantry, great-great-grandsons of the men who crossed the three-quarter’s of a mile at Gettysburg. Mark Craig is the commander.
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