Memorial Day Service at the Vietnam War Memorial on Monday – Bring Flowers
On Monday, May 30 we will once again gather at the Vietnam War Memorial in Montrose to remember those who lost their lives in service to our county. During this ceremony we honor local servicemen from Montrose, La Crescenta, La Cañada, Tujunga and Sunland who lost their lives in Vietnam. The Memorial, built during the height of the Vietnam War, has a wall that displays the 24 names.
Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on May 5, 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, and was first observed on May 30, 1868 when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.
What history tells us, though, is a much more poignant story of love and loss covered in flowers. Those who began leaving the flowers on the graves were the women and children who were left behind. What they tenderly did to remember their loved ones also reminded those around them of the sacrifice these men made for our freedom. The tradition of leaving flowers continued year after year in towns all over the country.
Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, a Canadian soldier, physician and poet, wrote a poem called “In Flanders Fields” after his close friend died in a horrific battle in Belgium in 1915 during WWI. Here is an excerpt: “In Flanders fields the poppies blow, Between the crosses, row on row, That mark our place; and in the sky The larks still bravely singing, fly Scarce heard amid the guns below …”
In 1918 an American woman named Moina Michael replied with her own poem: “We cherish too, the Poppy red, That grows on fields where valor led, It seems to signal to the skies, That blood of heroes never dies.” She then conceived of an idea to wear red poppies on Memorial Day in honor of those who died serving the nation during war. She was the first to wear one, and later sold poppies to her friends and co-workers with the money going to benefit servicemen in need.
On a trip to the United States, Anna Guerin from France learned of this new custom. When she returned home, she began selling artificial poppies as well. This tradition spread to other countries. By 1922, the VFW championed this idea and started the “Buddy Poppy” program in the U.S. that sold artificial poppies made by disabled veterans to benefit the widows and orphans left behind by the war.
I would like to personally invite you to join us this Monday for our annual Memorial Day service at 8 a.m. and to bring flowers in memory of those who gave their lives. Your small act of kindness may seem so simple to you but will bring great joy to those who remain. Vietnam War Memorial is located at the northwest corner of Ocean View and Honolulu Avenue.
Montrose-Verdugo City Chamber of Commerce: Your source for all things local! Our mission is to actively support and enrich the community, vitality and pride of Montrose, to help preserve the historic district and small town atmosphere, to promote economic stability and positive, productive relationships within Montrose and the surrounding communities.
Memorial Day service on Monday, May 30 at 8 a.m. at the Vietnam War Memorial, northwest corner of Ocean View Boulevard and Honolulu Avenue.
June business mixer on Wednesday, June 1 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Montrose Arts and Crafts Festival on Saturday, June 4 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, June 5 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the 2200, 2300 and 2400 blocks of Honolulu Avenue.
Glendale Police Department open house on Saturday, June 4 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., at 131 N. Isabel St. in Glendale.
Glendale Votes on Tuesday, June 7 in special election in conjunction with the Presidential Primary Election.