By Meg Peters
Lake Orion veterans and their comrades request the community’s attendance to many upcoming festivities at the Orion Veterans Memorial, including remembrances this Memorial Day.
A 1 p.m. the commemoration will begin at Veteran’s Memorial. To honor the sacrifices of the United States military since 1776, members of the American Legion Post 233 will read off the names of the 41 Orion military personnel who lost their lives in uniform while serving.
The Lake Orion High School band will also play under the direction of Michael Steele, and patrons will be encouraged to join in singing and watch the Michigan Minute Man Platoon in their gun salute at the ceremony’s end.
“The sacrifices all of our military have made since 1776 is meaningless unless we remember it with gratitude and appreciation, “chairman Dr. Joe Mastromatteo said. “I think it’s important for all citizens to attend this ceremony.”
The ceremony will take place after the Memorial Day Parade through downtown Lake Orion, and other events earlier in the morning.
The American Legion Post 233 is hosting a ceremony at 9 a.m. sharp at the East Lawn Cemetery on Orion Rd., complete with a “Taps” sounding, 21 gun salute, invocation speech and a wreath placement. Walk over to Children’s Park at 10 a.m. for a wreath toss before the Memorial Day Parade at 11 a.m. shortly after that.
The parade will begin at Blanche Sims Elementary, take Florence to Flint St, head west towards Broadway, then north towards Elizabeth St. to the parking lots on Elizabeth and Lapeer streets.
A few weeks after that, the Orion Veterans Memorial will be hosting the fifth annual Open Memorial Coffee with the Veterans. The first will be on June 11, and the second event will be June 25, between 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m.
The community is invited to participate and sit down and chat with the veterans, enjoy some coffee, donuts, and free hotdogs throughout the day.
“For us veterans, and the VFW members, this is something we take very seriously. Our motto is ‘a nation that forgets its past has no future’ so we need to let our younger folks know what our veterans have gone through,” Bob Watros said.
The Orion Veteran’s Memorial has placed more than 1,500 engraved bricks honoring the dedication of local Oxford and Orion veterans and others.
Patrons can visit the bronze statue “Tears of Sadness and Joy,” and take a stroll by the Freedom Wall, the personalized plaques and the victory garden donated by Home Depot.
The Orion Veteran’s Memorial is located at 312 S. Broadway just north of Starbucks.
For more information call 248-693-6636.
By Meg Peters