Rochester Honkers honors veterans on Memorial Day

Rochester Honkers honor veterans on Memorial Day

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(ABC 6 News) – Honkers baseball is back in the Med City, but before they took the field, they wanted to take a moment to remember veterans on Memorial Day.

They welcomed some special guests to honor the lives of those who gave the ultimate sacrifice.

The POW/MIA Riders Association was there to lead the pregame ceremony.

“Our prisoners of war and missing in action, those that are still listed is there’s over 81,000, the Honkers have been gracious enough to have a missing man chair here at the stadium,” national president of the POW/MIA Riders Association Scott Eggert said.

They honored a Gold Star family who lost their son while he was on duty.

“It’s a great time to come out and remember  our son and all these sacrifices that the veterans have made,” Curtis Swenson’s father Dave Swenson said.

Curtis Swenson served in the U.S. Marine Corps and his family came out to the game to keep his memory alive.

“He would come out to the Honkers a lot with his friends and enjoy the time and he just enjoyed sports in general and we miss him a lot,” Curtis Swenson’s mother Kay Swenson said.

The touching moment drew in everyone, including U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar who wanted to be present for this moment.

She got to know Curtis’ family shortly after they received the tragic news.

“A car drives up and tells Curtis’ mom that he’s lost, but what do they do with that grief and I think that’s a lot about what we ask of ourselves on Memorial Day, that we remember those soldiers that served, some of whom never came back and that we take that grief and put it into good,” U.S. Senator Klobuchar said.

Memorial Day has a special meaning, especially for those who served this country.

There was no better way to kick off the Honkers season than to keep their sacrifices in mind.

“We have freedom, we have baseball, and then we have a love of country, so I don’t know that we could put all three together in such a great package and then let everybody know that those that are still not here with us that we miss them and we want them to come home,” Eggert said.

This marks the beginning of the Honkers season. They’ll be back on their home field tomorrow to face the Thunderbay Border Cats.