Release: Sanders Salutes Gold Star Families on Memorial Day Weekend

Announces Monument Funds Awarded to Vermont Communities

DERBY, Vt., May 23 - Appearing at a Memorial Day weekend event here today, Senator Bernie Sanders announced that $237,500 will be awarded for monuments in four communities throughout Vermont.

As a member of the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs, Sanders (I-Vt.) secured funding for memorials in Derby, Weathersfield, Concord and Bennington.

Derby will receive $67,500 to expand the town's Veteran's Memorial Park by adding monuments to honor those who fought in World War II, Korea, Vietnam, the Persian Gulf War, Afghanistan and Iraq. Another $80,000 will go to Bennington. Weathersfield will receive $45,900, and Concord about $44,000.

Sanders made the announcement at a gathering of Gold Star Families, the relatives and loved ones of those who died in World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan. Hosted by the Scott and Penny Wheeler family of Derby and the Elks Lodge, speakers included Gold Star Family members and State Auditor Thomas Salmon, an Iraq war veteran.

"All of us have come to associate Memorial Day with barbeques and parades, but we should keep in mind that the true purpose of this solemn occasion is to honor those men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country," Sanders said.

"From our earliest days as a state, brave Vermonters have answered their country's call to duty knowing that they would be putting their lives on the line," he added. "We remember and honor all those who have given their lives from the Revolutionary War to the present day."