statue

Pictured celebrating Lady Liberty's birthday are, from left, Lyn Burgess, Sheriff Butch Burgess, Assistant District Attorney General Amanda Hunter, Susan Hunter, Robert Evans Burnette, Judee George, and Veterans Service Office Mark A. Daniels. Not pictured are Wilma Daniels and Crossville Police Officer Kendall Hargis.

On Oct. 28, the Statue of Liberty turned 122 years old. Originally dedicated by President Grover Cleveland on that day in 1886, she was re-dedicated by President Ronald Reagan on her 100th birthday. On Oct. 26, a group of people met to celebrate her birthday and presented a memorial to be displayed in their offices. Sheriff Butch Burgess with his son, Lyn, Veterans Service Officer Mark A. Daniels and his wife, Wilma, were joined by Susan Hunter, representing Cumberland County Mayor Brock Hill, and Assistant District Attorney Amanda Hunter, accompanied by Crossville Police Officer Kendall Hargis representing District Attorney Gary McKenzie.

The hosts of the event were Judee George and Robert Evans Burnette. The celebration began with a toast to Lady Liberty with champagne. Burnette's introduction was a fascinating one on how he became involved as director of communications for Armen G. Avedisian, chairman of the Statue of Liberty — Ellis Island Centennial Commission.

Each guest of honor was presented framed memorabilia to be displayed in their offices to share with the citizens of Cumberland County the significance of these iconic symbols of freedom and democracy.

Watching the celebration on video brought everyone present back to the re-dedication on Oct. 28, 1986. The fireworks display was incredible and the ceremony left your spirit full of pride to be an American.

The celebration of Lady Liberty's birthday was overwhelming. Thank you, Judee George and Robert Burnette, for a wonderful evening.