Memorial Day

Sgt. Anthony Bryant / Courtesy Department of Defense

A bittersweet smile flashes across the face of Sgt. Thomas Simpson as he talks about his good friend, Joey, who was one of everyone's favorites at Fort Carson.

"He just had a way about him of lifting everybody up," Simpson said. "You know, everybody was better from having him around."

Joey is Spc. Joseph Collette, who lost his life on March 22 during a firefight in Afghanistan's Kunduz province.

Colorado Department of Transportation

A major stretch of US highway 34 through Big Thompson Canyon is set to reopen just in time for the Memorial Day holiday.

The route will be accessible to the public starting May 24 at 4 p.m., said Johnny Olson, Colorado Department of Transportation regional director.  

“The Thursday before Memorial weekend we will be opening that up,” he said.

Courtesy Ted Hummell

A few years ago, Ted Hummell got an odd call. It was the Department of Defense and they wanted his help in their efforts to identify the remains of his uncle, William Hellstern. Hummell, a 67-year-old Jaguar dealer who lives in Castle Rock, knew his uncle through his late mom.

"She cried every Dec. 7," Hummell said.

Courtesy of Rocky Mountain National Park

A late spring weather system dropped snow and rain on Northern Colorado in mid-May, leaving many trail goers and campers without their usual haunts for Memorial Day weekend -- including the iconic North Ridge Trail in Rocky Mountain National Park.

“As far as the snow coverage up there – they’re dealing with 4 to 6 feet of snow, and now we’re dealing with high winds,” says Kyle Patterson, the park’s spokeswoman. “And so it does not look probable that Trail Ridge will be opening this weekend.”

Courtesy of Air Guitar World Championship

Ever wondered: What’s the sound of two hands playing a non-existent guitar?

Apparently it's pretty loud, at least it is if you’re a contestant at the U.S. Air Guitar National Qualifiers.

Kent Kanouse / Flickr - Creative Commons

For those of you wishing to venture into the mountains this 2014 Memorial Day weekend you’re in luck. Many mountain roads closed for the winter are now reopening. Some roads remain closed for the foreseeable future and others are temporarily open during daytime hours. Here's a complete list on the current status of the main mountain roads for Colorado’s Northern and Central Mountains.

Sixteen million men and women served in uniform during World War II. Today, 1.2 million are still alive, but hundreds of those vets are dying every day. In honor of Memorial Day, NPR's All Things Considered is remembering some of the veterans who have died this year.

The Dirty Dozen was a Hollywood hit, but it was based — loosely — on a true-to-life WWII paratrooper regiment. Jake McNiece led the group, whose exploits inspired the 1967 movie and earned the nickname "The Filthy Thirteen." McNiece died in January at the age of 93.

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Good morning, I'm David Greene.

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Every Memorial Day weekend, a ceremony takes place just outside Paris to honor a group of Americans who fought in France. They're not D-Day veterans, but a little known group of pilots who fought for France in World War I, before the U.S. entered the war.

This year's ceremony in the tiny town of Marnes-la-Coquette began with a flyover by two French air force Mirage fighter jets from the Escadrille Lafayette, or Lafayette Squadron, paying tribute to the men who founded the group nearly 100 years ago.

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