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Jonesborough to host veterans musical tribute

The community is invited to attend a tribute this Sunday to help honor those men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice.
“We owe these guys and ladies more than I think we realize sometimes,” Jonesborough Veterans Affairs Committee Chair Marion Light said.
In order to honor veterans, the 30th Veterans Memorial Musical Tribute will take place inside of the Historic Jonesborough Visitors Center at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, May 25. The tribute will last approximately one hour.
The tribute, he said, is being held to honor lives that have been lost.
“They were more than just numbers. They were actual people,” Light said.
He said although there will always be a vacant place at the table of those men and women who fought and died for their country, when someone spends time remembering what they lived for, it is easier to accept their death.
The event will include a presentation of colors by the Tennessee Highway Patrol Guard and Daniel Boone Marine JROTC. The National Anthem will be performed by the Johnson City Community Concert Band, and the posting of the colors will be done by the Tennessee Highway Patrol Honor Guard. Taps will be performed by James Culp.
Rev. Wayne White will offer the opening prayer and Mayor Kelly Wolfe will welcome all the guests.
The Marine JROTC group will also provide a surprise during the ceremony.
“We usually have close to 400 people,” Light said. “At one time, we had the largest audience at any place in the State of Tennessee for Memorial Day.”
There will be a reception, which includes drinks and food from various businesses in town.
“It’s a good time for people to grab a bite and go to the auditorium and sit and talk,” Light said. “It’s worth all the effort we put in to see that.”
An update regarding new lighting at the Jonesborough Veterans Memorial Park was provided on Monday.
Light said $1,372 was taken out of the Veterans Park budget for the LED lighting.
The 100-watt bulbs that were being used at the park provided between 10,000 and 20,000 light hours. The LED lights burn about 120 kilowatt hours and last 60,000 hours.
The new LED lights will save an average of $93.77 a year.
“I really believe we are at the point that we don’t have a choice, and we need to do something that is progressive,” Light said.
The eight fixtures located within the park were replaced.
“At night there really is a big difference. The glare is less,” he said.
The new lighting does not require as much electricity. It also decreases the light pollution in the night sky. Light said the fountain and water feature also looks much better.
“I see more and more people come to the park now,” Light said.
He said the Jonesborough Veterans Affairs Committee is still accepting brick orders. The polished granite brick, which includes an individual’s name, rank and branch of service, is $50.
The project, which began 15 years ago, currently includes 1,600 bricks.
“We did open it up and now we have a place for 700 more bricks,” Light said. “We are hoping to have 2,000 bricks one day.”
Those interested in buying a brick must bring proof the veterans lived in Washington County at some point in their lives, as well as $50 to purchase the brick at the Recorder’s Office.
Once Light receives several requests, he sends them to Georgia Granite where the bricks are engraved with a high pressure engraver.
“I put the epoxy in and then they are laid,” Light said.