Memorial parade replaces New Market commemoration at VMI

Memorial parade replaces New Market commemoration at VMI
A wreath is laid at the foot of the sculpture of Virginia Mourning Her Dead during a memorial parade at the Virginia Military Institute. (Source: WDBJ7 Photo)

LEXINGTON, Va. (WDBJ) - The Virginia Military Institute has seen a lot of changes this year, and is seeing more this graduation weekend.

A centerpiece traditionally has been a parade in honor of ten cadets who died at the battle of New Market in 1864, fighting for the Confederacy. This year, the focus has been widened to all VMI cadets and alumni who have died in service to the county.

“It’s more than just the ten,” explained Col. Bill Wyatt, VMI’s Director of Marketing and Communications. “It’s 592, and when you think about the numbers of cadets who’ve come through here, who have gone on to serve their country and who paid that ultimate sacrifice, it’s really the least that we could do for them.”

The weekend ends with commencement on Sunday, held this year outdoors at VMI’s Memorial Field.

Copyright 2021 WDBJ. All rights reserved.