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County celebrates freedom

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062322 san jac juneteenthA veteran rides a tractor during the Juneteenth Parade. Old Glory and the Lone Star symbolize the Juneteenth connection to Texas. Photos by Charles Ballard

Special to the News-Times

COLDSPRING — Residents of San Jacinto County marked the anniversary of both emancipation and naming Juneteenth a holiday with a celebration on Saturday.

The annual celebration is sponsored by the Friends of Hopewell Inc.

This year marks the first anniversary recognizing Juneteenth as a federal holiday, as President Joe Biden signed a bill into law June 17, 2021.

The Emancipation Program was presided over by Ester Elmore-Wynn.

Following a flag raising ceremony and the singing of “Oh Freedom” by Harry Belafonte, speakers explained the significance of the holiday.

Opening prayer was offered by the Rev. James Elmore, Eastside Church of God in Christ. Other speakers included Lille Lunnon-Bason, County Judge Fritz Faulkner and Dale Everitt, who offered “Juneteenth Expressions.”

“The Emancipation Proclamation” was read by Christyn Combs; “Lift Every Voice and Sing” was led by Christine Andrews and “How Great is Our God” was led by led by Mrs. Christine Andrews

The closing prayer was offered by Alice Hines.

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