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Freemasons Remember Masonic Veterans at Rhode Island Veterans Memorial Cemetery Ceremony

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20230526VetsFreemasons from throughout Rhode Island and their guests met at the Rhode Island Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Exeter on Friday, May 26 to lay a wreath at the Masonic Veterans Memorial and pay tribute to those Rhode Island Freemasons who have served this country in the military.
Douglas J. Grant, Most Worshipful Grand Master of Masons for the State of Rhode Island, conducted the ceremony. He was assisted by Michael R. Barbera, Right Worshipful Grand Marshal, and Mekawy E. Elmekawy, Right Worshipful Grand Chaplain.
In his remarks, Grand Master Grant said, “We have a responsibility to keep our Veterans in mind not only as they serve our country now but more importantly after they have passed on to the Celestial Lodge above. It was their commitment, effort, and sacrifice that now allow us to enjoy the freedom that we have. Every veteran that served played a part in the ongoing effort to support this great country and to protect all that we have. Their sacrifice must never be forgotten. It is our obligation, not only as citizens of this country, but as Freemasons in our universal craft to salute them for what they have done.
“Though they have now passed on, we must never forget that they are the reason that our country remains the greatest country in the world and that Memorial Day is a day to pay homage to our Veterans.”
A color guard from Overseas Lodge No. 40 presented the American flag.
The Masonic Veterans Memorial was dedicated in 2006. Wreaths are placed at the memorial each Veterans Day and the Friday preceding the Memorial Day holiday.
The photo shows the Grand Master of Masons for the State of Rhode Island Douglas J. Grant, third from left, addressing Freemasons at the wreath-laying ceremony at the Masonic Veterans Memorial at the Rhode Island Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Exeter. Pictured with the Grand Master, from left, Michael R. Barbera, Grand Marshal; Mekawy E. Elmekawy, Grand Chaplain; Andre H. Faria, Jr., Deputy Grand Master; Rick Baccus, Senior Grand Warden, Michael J. Barboza, Grand Treasurer; and Ronald P. Reed, Grand Secretary. Photograph taken by RW Grand Historian Ray Geer.