Austin readies for Memorial Day programs

Published 9:36 am Friday, May 8, 2009

Memorial Day plans are made to honor all veterans Monday, May 25.

Everett DeYoung, commander of American Legion Post No. 91, will be the grand marshal of the day.

Ray Waters will serve as officer of the day.

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A program will begin 8:05 a.m. May 25 at the Mower County Veterans Memorial in downtown Austin on the courthouse west lawn.

Norman Hecimovich, president of the Memorial Day organizing committee, will introduce the Rev. Kristi Koppel, associate pastor at St. Olaf Lutheran Church, who will give an invocation.

Sue Register will play “To the Colors” during the flag-raising.

Hecimovich will give a talk on patriotism.

Wreaths will be laid by representatives of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Disabled Veterans of America and auxiliaries.

A firing squad comprised of veterans from the American Legion, and VFW will fire a salute and Register will play “Taps.”

The Rev. Michael Ewert, pastor of Bethlehem Free Methodist Church, will say the benediction.

The next event on Memorial Day will be the parade, which forms 8:30 a.m. May 25 in front of the VFW Post, 300 Fourth Ave. N.E.

The parade route will move west to North Main Street and south to First Avenue Northeast and then east to the Salvation Army Austin Corps.

The parade will begin at 8:45 a.m. May 25. The Soldiers Memorial Service will begin 9:30 a.m. May 25 at Oakwood Cemetery.

Roger Reller is acting chairman for the event.

Special music will be provided by the Austin High School Chamber Ensemble and AHS Band as well as Register on trumpet.

Koppel and Ewert will provide prayers and Hecimovich will give a patriotic talk.

Twenty wreaths will be laid at the Soldiers Memorial in Oakwood Cemetery.

Then, the veterans will move to Horace Austin Park for a special service to honor veterans buried at sea.

Auxiliary presidents Annette Quinlan, Martha Campbell and Daphne Wagner will officiate at the tossing of memorial wreaths into the Cedar River.

Reller will coordinate the honors for U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, Merchant Marine and Coast Guard.

Koppel and Ewert will provide prayers, the American Legion and VFW firing squad will fire a salute and Register will play “Taps.”

The schedule for area cemetery services includes: 11 a.m., Calvary; 11:30 a.m., Lansing; and noon, Midway/Oakland, VFW color guard; 11 a.m., Grandview; and 11:30 a.m., Enterprise, American Legion.

There will also be flag-raising ceremonies at 6:50 a.m. at the American Legion and VFW posts’ headquarters.

American Legion Post No. 91 will host breakfast for the veterans and their families beginning at 7 a.m.

Nancy Jessen, secretary of the Memorial Day committee, is assisting Hecimovich in planning the events.