CHAPEL HILL – The community took a pause to celebrate Memorial Day Monday—but one tribute took a slightly different approach to the normal traditions.

The Orange County Peace Coalition hosted the afternoon event called “Veterans and Victims of War: Past, Present, and Future” in Carrboro Town Commons. Carrboro Mayor Mark Chilton read a “proclamation” during the ceremony that lasted about two hours.

“It’s a little bit of an unusual Memorial Day event. Our goal is to speak to the memory of and remember all those who have suffered in wars in the past,” Chilton said.

Jan Broughton, of the Peace Coalition, says it’s been an annual event for about 10 years. She says it’s not meant to take focus away from veterans, but rather to raise awareness for world peace.

“It just is something that seems to bring our community together and also reminds us of what it takes for our county to remain free,” she said.

It featured poetry readings from community members in addition to vocal performances by the Raging Grannies.

“There are many more who have suffered in war, in addition to veterans. We need to honor the veterans as well as the civilians who have been killed,” Broughton said.

She says it was also a chance to remember the 30th anniversary of the end of the war in Vietnam.

“In these times, we are so much more ambivalent about war. It’s difficult to be positive in our thoughts but we need to search for peace rather than war.”

For more information on the OC Peace Coalition, click here.