It was Memorial Day, but it was a day to celebrate the life and career of giving of Sonny Sweet. The annual Memorial day celebration at Boone Mall turned into the surprise salute to the retired Army Colonel and long time head of the area Red Cross chapter. There were awards—local, state, and national—the MOAA Presidential Award for his military and community service; the 2014 Benn Suttle Community Service Award from the Boone Area Chamber of Commerce; one from the Kiwanis Club he has served for years and the announcement of a donation to the Zeller Eliminate Project in his name; a Blood, Sweat and Gears honorary grant in the $20-30,000 range to be officially awarded June 28th. All of those who gave their lives were remembered by the overflow crowd at the mall where there was music from the Watauga Community Band and Generation Excellence as well as at ceremonies in Blowing Rock and at ASU.