No in-person D-Day ceremony has financial, emotional impact on Bedford

Annual ceremony can draw thousands of people to Bedford

D-Day memorial ceremonies changing because of coronavirus, going virtual
D-Day memorial ceremonies changing because of coronavirus, going virtual

BEDFORD, Va. – For the first time, the annual D-Day ceremony in Bedford will be virtual, which means a big loss in potential revenue for businesses in the town.

There was no crowd Friday at the Bedford Boys Tribute Center, adding insult to injury after the past few months.

“Being closed these months, we’ve lost a lot of revenue coming in to sustain and pay the rent and everything," said Bedford Boys Tribute Center Co-Curator Linda Parker.

She said the community has rallied together to help support the center.

“That’s this town. This is Bedford. A small town, but they have a true love for the Bedford Boys and the people that live in this town," Parker said.

As the coronavirus spread, she knew the chance of having an in-person ceremony this year was slim.

“To take this away from people, that’s really been hard on them, especially going up to the D-Day Memorial, coming here to the Bedford Boys Tribute Center, being able to go to the graveyard," Parker said.

At the restaurant Azul, the lack of an in-person ceremony isn’t a big financial concern.