By Dylan SYLVESTER
America’s flag flew at half-staff above a sea of sorrowful faces on Monday morning when the Crescenta Valley community offered remembrances of those soldiers whose names are listed on the Vietnam War Memorial in the center of the Montrose Shopping Park.
“Although they may not stand among us today, they live on in our memories,” said City of Glendale Mayor Paula Devine, offering words of comfort when speaking to the crowd that filled the corner of Ocean View and Honolulu.
Participating in the ceremony were the Boy Scouts of Montrose-Verdugo City, members of the Glendale Police Dept. and the Crescenta Valley High School JROTC, which provided the opening salute of the colors. Civic groups provided bouquets of flowers to adorn the space.
Speakers included Congressman Adam Schiff who shared the stories of some local heroes who served, reminding those in attendance that military personnel aren’t nameless faces, but are neighbors and friends.
Sen. Carol Liu impressed upon the audience the important role of the government in supporting veterans and how community members can make a difference in the government policies that aim to aid soldiers who have returned home.
Devine continued to share her story, telling of an uncle whom she never met, but had greatly inspired her life. “Uncle Paul,” for whom she is named and whose dog tags she wore around her neck on Monday morning, was lost in the field of battle, marking the Devine family as another who had been affected by war.
In closing, Steve Pierce, a member of the Montrose Shopping Park Association and a Vietnam War veteran, spoke aloud the 19 names of the heroes that the memorial bears. All then bowed their heads for a moment of silence.