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Col. Charles R. Rayl (Ret.) speaks during the 2018 Chase County All Veterans Memorial Day Ceremony Monday at Swope Park in Cottonwood Falls.

Memorial Day will be celebrated in nontraditional ways this year.

Chase County All Veterans Committee will not be hosting its annual Memorial Day celebration this year, but that does not mean the day shall go unrecognized.

Local Vietnam War veteran Charles Rayl said the best way to honor those who died in service is to do something, such as planting flowers at graves or reaching out to veterans via telephone and digital messaging, to “stay healthy and still honor those who have been killed in action or died on tour.”

“It’s just unfortunate,” Rayl said, adding how the virus has impacted everyone negatively in one way or another, especially local farmers and ranchers.

The committee took the safety guidance of the county and state and decided to forego the celebration this year. In previous years, the community has gathered at the Veterans Memorial in Swope Park. While this year may be an anomaly, Rayl said the speaker for next year’s celebration has already been organized.

Rayl will also have more information on Flag Day as it comes closer.

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