‘Never forget they gave it all’
American Legion National Vice Commander Bill Roy and Auxiliary National Vice President Trish Ward lay a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery. Photo by Tierney Cross/The American Legion

‘Never forget they gave it all’

View Photo Gallery

American Legion National Vice Commander Bill Roy was remembering all the veterans who have passed as he laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery on Memorial Day.

“It was an honor to represent The American Legion and lay the wreath. That’s what we do at The American Legion: We honor our veterans, living and past,” said Roy, a member of American Legion Post 2 in Manchester, N.H. “I read something recently that said Armed Forces Day is for servicemembers who are still in uniform, Veterans Day is for servicemembers who are out of uniform, and Memorial Day is for those who never got out of their uniform .... we can’t forget them. Otherwise, we wouldn’t be enjoying the freedoms we have now.”

Speakers at the Memorial Day ceremony in Arlington National Cemetery included President Biden, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin III and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Air Force Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr. 

“We gather at this sacred place, at this solemn moment, to remember, to honor the sacrifices of the hundreds of thousands of women and men who have given their lives for this nation,” President Biden said in his remarks. “Each one bound by a common commitment – not to a place, not to a person, not to a president. But to an idea, unlike any idea in human history, the idea of the United States of America. Today we bare witness to the price they paid.”

Roy personally understands the cost of freedom, as a veteran and having lost family members and friends in war. It’s why when the opportunity presented itself to have breakfast with Gold Star families of the U.S. Army 1st Infantry Division on Sunday, May 26, at the Legion’s Washington, D.C., office, he was committed to being there.

“Both of my grandparents had a son that they lost in World War II,” Roy shared. “So being with the Gold Star families means a lot. I want people to remember the sacrifice of our veterans who gave their lives. I’ve heard the saying that they gave up their todays so we can enjoy our tomorrows. Nothing says it better than that. Never forget they gave it all.”