by Dennis Dalman
Myron and Dennis Ayer, father and son, who were born and raised in Sartell, had a lot to remember on Memorial Day last Monday.
Both are veterans, and Myron worked for 34 years at the Sartell paper mill. The two men attended the Memorial Day ceremony at Veterans Park. Then immediately following that, they participated in the ceremony and picnic that honored former Verso employees.
Myron, a millwright, retired from the paper mill in 1972, long before it was known as Verso. He is now a resident of the St. Benedict’s Nursing Home in St. Cloud. Myron was a sailor in the Pacific during World War II.
Dennis, a long-time U.S. Air Force man, served in Saudi Arabia from 1991-92 and retired in 1998 after 20 years of service to his country. Upon retirement, he and his wife decided to stay in Virginia, where he had been assigned to Lackland Air Force Base.
The Ayers said they were glad to take part in the two Memorial Day ceremonies because both ceremonies reflected so many moments, memories and meanings in their lives.[/media-credit] Father and son, Myron and Dennis Ayer, attended two ceremonies in Sartell – the Memorial Day event and the commemoration of the tragedy at the Verso paper mill. The mill, which had been an economic bedrock of Sartell for more than a century, was ruined by an explosion and fire right after last year’s Memorial Day ceremony. The disaster killed an employee, Jon Maus of Albany. Myron Ayer was an employee at the mill for 34 years.