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On Memorial Day, Dover honors two of its own

Wayne Gower, commander of the American Legion Post 8 in Dover, speaks during the town's Memorial Day ceremony Monday.
Paul Cuno-Booth
/
NHPR
Wayne Gower, commander of the American Legion Post 8 in Dover, speaks during the town's Memorial Day ceremony Monday.

On Monday morning, about 100 people gathered at Pine Hill Cemetery in Dover as they do every Memorial Day. Small American flags circled the cemetery’s monument to veterans.

This year’s ceremony felt especially close to home for some. It honored two local veterans who died earlier this year.

“This past weekend, we were all caught up in the beautiful weather and had a blast at cookouts and other fun events,” said Dover Mayor Bob Carrier. “But how often do we stop and think about why we can enjoy these freedoms?”

During the ceremony, Carrier handed a framed proclamation and a folded Marine Corps flag to the family of Capt. Jack Casey. The 26-year-old from Dover was killed in a helicopter crash during a training exercise in February, along with four fellow Marines.

At Dover's Memorial Day ceremony, Mayor Bob Carrier speaks alongside the family of Capt. Jack Casey, a Marine who died in a helicopter crash earlier this year.
Paul Cuno-Booth
/
NHPR
At Dover's Memorial Day ceremony, Mayor Bob Carrier speaks alongside the family of Capt. Jack Casey, a Marine who died in a helicopter crash earlier this year.

Casey’s mother, Catherine, said he was ambitious and driven – but also kind and fun to be around.

“He helped people along the way,” she said. “He achieved those goals by bringing people with him, and not by leaving them behind.”

Like other family members, she wore a shirt that read “Be like Jack.”

Catherine Casey, the mother of Marine Capt. Jack Casey, holds a framed proclamation from the City of Dover at a Memorial Day ceremony Monday. Capt. Casey, a Dover native, died in a helicopter crash earlier this year.
Paul Cuno-Booth
/
NHPR
Catherine Casey, the mother of Marine Capt. Jack Casey, holds a framed proclamation from the City of Dover at a Memorial Day ceremony Monday. Capt. Casey, a Dover native, died in a helicopter crash earlier this year.

The ceremony also honored Capt. Ann Darby Reynolds, a U.S. Navy nurse from Dover who served in Vietnam. She died in February at her home in Exeter, at age 84.

Reynolds was part of the only group of Navy nurses to receive Purple Hearts during the war.

On Christmas Eve 1964, after a bomb went off at their quarters in Saigon, Reynolds and several other nurses tended to other people’s injuries before their own.

“While her passing was long after her retirement from the Navy, we wanted to thank and honor her service and sacrifices that she made while serving,” said Jonathan Nichols, the executive director of the Woodman Museum, which helped organize Dover’s Memorial Day ceremony.

Paul Cuno-Booth covers health and equity for NHPR. He previously worked as a reporter and editor for The Keene Sentinel, where he wrote about police accountability, local government and a range of other topics. He can be reached at pcuno-booth@nhpr.org.
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