The American flag was unfurled at the beginning of the Memorial Day service at Grove City Cemetery in Blackfoot in 2019.

BLACKFOOT –The tradition of placing wreaths at the graves of those who fought for our country may not be done this year due to COVID-19 changing how we live life. However, that does not mean that people need to forget the meaning of the day — remembering those we have lost, remembering why we loved them, and remember all the good times we had with them.

Traditionally, the City of Blackfoot, Bingham County Commissioners, American Legion, Zhonta, and many other organizations join forces to place wreaths on the gravestones of those who served our country. The community feels so deeply about honoring its fallen veterans that there is now Patriot Field near the Bingham County Courthouse.

People are welcomed to Patriot Field to observe, remember, and feel — observe the reverence of the place; remember all those that have been lost; feel the emotion, solace, and somberness of the memorial.

Last year, the dedication of the new statue was held with Gov. Brad Little speaking the Friday before Memorial Day.

Now, one year later, would be a good time to walk down the path to the statue, read the names on the wall and forget about the challenges being faced today. Instead, think of the challenges that the people of the Bingham County did not have to directly deal with because of the brave men and women of the U.S. military. Their service allowed people to have a “normal” life even when there was no normal.

This year, Blackfoot Mayor Marc Carroll along with Lorna Moffat and others are trying to arrange the placing of the wreaths but have not been able to contact all of those normally involved. Carroll’s hope is to bring some semblance of normalcy to the people of Blackfoot and Bingham County without forgetting social distancing.

Wreaths are to be placed on Monday, Memorial Day, by 10 a.m. and will remain on location until 5 p.m. People are invited to make a driving lap of the Grove City Cemetery to revel in the beauty. Also, nationally, those who know how or are capable of playing “Taps” are asked to do so at 9:02 a.m. as a sign of solidarity with those who have fallen.

For those who use this weekend as a reminder to visit lost family and friends, they are asked to remember that it is acceptable to visit their gravesites and leave flowers/plants, but to do so while maintaining social distancing.