As harsh as it sounds, D. Ray Hill, the new superintendent of Anniston City Schools, wasn’t the Board of Education’s first choice. Board members wanted Matthew Alexander, approving him by a 4-1 vote. He wanted the job, so we thought. But then he declined to sign his contract.

Memorial Day is solemn and festive, an odd combination of remembering the nation’s military deaths and celebrating the arrival of another interminable summer. Even the holiday’s roots are complicated by their connection to the Civil War. Sectional feelings die hard.

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