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As the sun finally emerged from a weekend of clouds and drizzle, community members came out to celebrate and honor the men and women who sacrificed their lives for the country.

Duxbury Police officers, selectmen, boys and girl scouts and town officials walked in the Memorial Day parade on Monday to honor those who had made the ultimate sacrifice.

Wong began his speech with the story of a trip he and his wife took to West Point, in upstate New York, to visit their son, who is in the Air Force Academy. While at West Point, the three decided to visit the West Point Cemetery, where Lieutenant Timothy L. Steele is buried. Wong explained that Steele is buried beside two of his classmates, who died in Afghanistan during the spring and summer of 2011. The Wongs left a seashell on Steele’s headstone, “a token of love and remembrance from the seaside community that was his home.”

“Brother in arms, class- mates in life, together in death,” Wong said. “It is when you first see the graves that you are struck by the real cost of these wars that we are fighting overseas.”

In his speech, Wong said he pondered the meaning of the loss of so many lives, “in conflicts where success is so ill defined.” Wong said those who lost their lives were not all-star athletes or college graduates, but proved themselves to “embody the best in us as people.”

From the American Revolution to the current war on terror, Wong said, one million men and woman have sacrificed their lives to protect the country.

“This is why we are gathered on Memorial Day, to honor the memory of our fallen, not by mourning them, but by celebrating their lives and honoring their sacrifice,” Wong said.