BILOXI -- Thousands of people placed flags on the 20,000 graves at the Biloxi National Cemetery in observance of Memorial Day, which is Monday.
Cemetery personnel passed out the flags as the volunteers gathered under the oaks at 8 a.m. Within 30 minutes, every grave marker was decorated with a flag.
"This is a longtime event at the cemetery," Biloxi National Cemetery Director Graham Wright said. "This used to be a hospital cemetery but it became a national cemetery in the 1970s."
Wright said the cemetery is the final resting place for military men and women.
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"It's for people who were honorably discharged from a branch of the military, people who gave their lives in combat and their families," he said.
He said he was pleased with Saturday's turnout.
"This gets bigger and bigger every year, he said. "It's neat to see all of the children and Scouts that get involved."
Kimberly Parker of Pascgaoula said she had never attended the ceremony before Saturday.
"I've always heard about it and I wanted to check it out," she said. "It was very overwhelming to see the cemetery, I had no idea it was this big."
Ariel Ely of Gautier accompanied Parker to the ceremony.
"My grandfather is in the VA hospital here and I wanted to come out and do something for the veterans," she said. "It's been a great experience and I hope I'm able to do it again next year."