Central Florida celebrates Memorial Day

Former congressman stresses helping returning military members

GOTHA, Fla. - Many Central Floridians spent Memorial Day honoring those who have served their country and stressing that more needs to be done for soldiers returning home.

Lou Frey, a Central Florida congressman who voted to make Memorial Day a national holiday in 1971, was among those who attended a ceremony at Woodlawn Memorial Park in Gotha.

Frey spoke to the crowd about the importance of helping veterans who return home, saying enough is not being done to help them find jobs when they return home.  He also said counseling should be provided, too.

The Woodlawn ceremony has been taking place since 1950.

Navy veteran Leo Carey attended the first event 62 years ago, shortly after returning from the Pacific, where he served in World War II.

"Well, my wife's buried right out there, and she was Navy also," said Carey, pointing to a nearby cemetery.  "I've got four brothers that were in the service, and they're all gone.  Just me and my sister left out of 11, so it gets emotional."

Besides honoring veterans at the ceremony, widows, widowers and "gold star" parents -- those who've lost children who have served -- were also thanked for their sacrifice.

Watch Local 6 News for more on this story.

Copyright 2012 by ClickOrlando.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.