Military News

Monday, May 25, 2015

U.S., French service members honor Memorial Day 2015 in Paris

by Maj. Sheryll Klinkel

5/24/2015 - PARIS, France -- Gen. Frank Gorenc, U.S. Air Forces in Europe - Air Forces in Africa commander, and Airmen from Ramstein Air Base, Germany, participated in Memorial Day ceremonies in and around Paris May 24, 2015 to pay tribute to fallen comrades.

The events included wreath-laying ceremonies at Sureness American Cemetery near Paris, and the Arc de Triomphe, to honor the Tomb on the Unknown Soldier who is buried beneath.

Approximately 200 U.S. and French service members, civilians, and families attended the ceremony at Suresnes American Cemetery. The ceremony also included participation of a U.S. Air Force honor guard from the 86th Airlift Wing, Ramstein Air Base, Germany;  a C-130 Hercules flyover, also from the 86th AW; a United States Air Forces in Europe Band bugler; and a speech and wreath-laying by the general.

The Suresnes American Cemetery is the resting place for 1,565 men and women and 974 men and missing in actions. It is the only American cemetery in Europe that shelters fallen comrades from both world wars.

At the Arc de Triomphe, approximately 100 U.S. and French service members, civilians, and families attended an intimate ceremony to pay respect to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The general presented a wreath in front of the eternal flame, while an honor guard presented colors, and a bandsman concluded the ceremony with the playing of "Taps."

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