VA Black Hills Health Care System
Celebration of Life 2011
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Black Hills Health Care System observed their Annual "Celebration of Life" Memorial Service at the Fort Meade VA Medical Center (VAMC) on Thursday, May 26.
The ceremony, which is held annually at the Fort Meade VAMC allows family members and staff the opportunity to honor Veterans who passed away during the past year.
Families are offered the opportunity to commemorate their loved ones by making a symbolic balloon that is presented during a roll call of the names of the Veterans that have passed on. The ceremony includes an invocation, welcome, short address, roll call of Veterans, benediction and a release of balloons. The release of the helium filled balloons symbolizes a "letting go" and an uplifting of spirit as the ceremony concludes.
Family members who lost loved ones and staff members who not only served these special Veterans but also embraced them as "family" joined together on this day to remember, mourn, and celebrate.
You can view additional photos here.