Memorial Day "Lest We Forget ... All gave some ... Some gave all"
We've all benefited from the courage our military men and women have displayed time and time again over the history of our country. It is only appropriate that we set aside time each year to memorialize those who died in our defense. Sometimes it is easy to forget that our freedom comes at a very high price and that even those who survive the terror of war are often reminded of the cost as long as they live. We can never fully repay the debt to America's soldiers, but we can continue to remember their service and sacrifices by honoring the memory of the fallen.
Once again, America is reminded of the thousands of our fellow countrymen and women who have given their lives in the defense of freedom and liberty; not only for America, but for millions of others who sought this birthright for themselves, their children and their countries, and who needed America's help. We can never thank enough those families whose husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, sons and daughters made the commitment and sacrifice to secure what our Founders also fought for with their "lives, fortunes and sacred honor."
One of the great things about living in Euclid is the opportunity we have to be involved in city events. Take Memorial Day, for example. Memorial Day is an occasion for honoring all who fought for freedom and for grieving those who did not return to their families. Memorial Day is a sacred day to all war veterans. America's collective consciousness demands that all citizens be reminded of the deaths of their fellow countrymen during wartime. By honoring the nation's war dead, we preserve their memory and thus their service and sacrifice.
Memorial Day in Euclid begins with early morning graveside services. The veteran graves are marked with an American flag and flower. The Euclid Joint Veterans Council conducts a graveside service at 7:45 a.m. at the Euclid Cemetery and another service at 8:15 a.m. at St. Paul Cemetery. Some of America's first war veterans from the Revolutionary War are buried in Euclid: Lt. John Crosier, Battle of Bunker Hill; Lt. David Dille; Sgt. James Jackson; Pvt. Anthony Cummins; and Pvt. Jacob Coleman.
The Euclid Memorial Day Parade is one of Ohio's largest and oldest. It begins at 10 a.m., under the direction of the Euclid Joint Veterans Council. The parade route includes a march from East 228th Street and Lakeshore Boulevard to East 222nd, and south to the Veterans' Memorial, next to Euclid City Hall. Memorial Day Services are held directly after the parade at the Veterans' Memorial. (The memorial was constructed and is maintained by the Euclid Joint Veteran's Council. Inscribed on the memorial are the names of Euclid service members who died defending our country: 90 World War II, eight Korean War, 12 Vietnam War, one War on Terrorism.) With the assistance of the city of Euclid, the Euclid Joint Veterans Council conducts the Memorial Day program, which includes the Council with the mayor of Euclid placing a wreath and delivering welcome addresses. The Memorial Day speaker is selected by the veteran group leading the parade that year (responsibility rotates among the city's veterans groups). A rifle squad salute honors the dead, alongside the presentation of Taps.
The Euclid Joint Veterans Council Memorial Day point of contact is Andy Kiral, (216) 832-7095. Mail inquiries to: Euclid Joint Veterans Council Memorial Day Association, 585 East 222nd Street, Euclid, OH 44123.
Veterans Day is also commemorated as Armistice Day or remembrance Day in other parts of the world, as they recall that major hostilities of World War I formally ended at the eleventh hour, of the eleventh day, of the eleventh month in 1918, with the signing of the Armistice that ended World War I.
The American Legion Euclid Post 343, with the city of Euclid, sponsors an annual Veterans Day Memorial Service, at the Euclid City Hall, 585 East 222nd Street, on November 11, at 11 a.m. (regardless of which day of the week Veterans Day happens to be). The public is welcomed and encouraged to attend.
The state of Ohio honors outstanding veterans through the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame. Click here to visit the site; be sure to look for inductee Tony J. Sustarsic, who was honored as part of the class of 2008.