Editor's Note: This article has been altered after publication to reflect the correct spelling of Rick and Paula Graser's last name.
Veterans Day is a time for celebrating and remembering, said Jim Hogan, who commands the Mokena VFW.
Though a part of Sunday's ceremony involved a solemn remembrance of those veterans who paid the ultimate price, much of what the festivities at the William Martin VFW Post 725 were about comradery. And that's what Hogan was looking for.
"It's a day to enjoy living in the greatest, freest country on the planet," he said.
Sunday was Veterans Day and many communities across have honored those who have served this weekend. Service men and woman from different branches of the military along with about two dozen people from the community came to the cemetery on Wolf Road.
Mokena VFW's tribute to Veterans Day underscored the sacrifice made to protect this country.
"We pay tribute to the flag ... we are assembled here to honor those who have fought under that sacred symbol of our land," Hogan said.
Veterans left "our schools, our shops and our farms to pick up weapons against our foes" and responded without hesitation to the call of duty, he continued.
Two such veterans who left behind their lives in the U.S. are Rick and Paula Graser, a married couple from Mokena who have three boys and a fourth on the way. Rick served in the Navy during Desert Storm and Paula is an Army veteran who spent time in Iraq.
To them, Veterans Day is a time to remember their fellow solders and to thank them for their service.