Hundreds came to pay their respects at Rhode Island Veterans Cemetery in Exeter on Monday.
It was a solemn moment as Gold Star family members, along with Gov. Gina Raimondo, placed a wreath at the World War II Memorial as a tribute the those who died serving in the armed forces.
“Because of the sacrifice of you and your loved ones, we’re the greatest country on earth,” Raimondo said at the state’s 44th annual Memorial Day commemoration. “We have our freedom. We have our democracy and we’re still the envy of the world.”
During a politically divisive time in the country, elected officials reminded Rhode Islanders of their shared values.
“Where we may have political differences, we have to remember that we’re still all Americans and think of the tremendous service and sacrifice those who wear the uniform give every day to protect freedom,” Congressman Jim Langevin said.
The event was personal for the Brown family. They have loved ones who served in World War II and Vietnam buried at the cemetery.
“We just wanted to come out and have a peaceful moment with them and reminisce,” Carol Brown told NBC 10.