A Thousand Words: Sept. 20, 2011

Volunteers from the local community conduct a memorial on Saturday at the Confederate Monument in Fairview Cemetery for unknown soldiers that died during the Civil War on the 150th anniversary of Maj. Gen. Simon Bolivar Buckner’s invasion of Bowling Green.

Christian Randolph

Early on Sunday afternoon, a small group of volunteers from the Bowling Green community stood at attention in Fairview Cemetery. Led by a flag with 13 stars and pushed forward by the rhythm of a solitary snare drum, the group marched and then aligned itself in front of the Confederate Monument at the cemetery.

On the 150th anniversary of Simon Bolivar Buckner’s Confederate invasion of Bowling Green, the procession was part of a ceremony in remembrance of the unknown soldiers from Bowling Green who died during the Civil War.

One of the volunteers, Richmond senior William Hoy, didn’t have any family die in the Civil War. But as an Iraq War veteran, Hoy did have another reason to participate in the event when asked to volunteer.

“It bring backs memories and it makes me miss it (deployment),” Hoy said. “It makes me think of some of the guys we lost and things like that.”

Louisville senior Stefan Gavula, another volunteer in the ceremony, also saw importance in volunteering despite lacking a direct connection to the war. Gavula’s family immigrated to the United States from Germany.

“Even though our ancestors weren’t in the Civil War, it’s the same thing,” Gavula said. “And it’s good to remember the ones who fight for a cause they felt dear to them.”

Randy Hulsey, a tinsmith and living history demonstrator from Bowling Green, volunteered for the ceremony because his father performed the same memorial service in 1966. Hulsey sees a great importance in keeping living history alive and sharing it with as many people as possible.

He had relatives who fought for both the Confederate and Union armies during the war and finds a strong personal connection with participating in living history events.

“I well up inside knowing what our ancestors went through and all the struggles they had, and I can’t imagine if we had not had this Civil War what the population of the United States would be like,” Hulsey said. “It would be drastically different. There are just a lot of emotions that run through me and a lot of thoughts.”