Memorial Day is Monday, May 25. Area veterans organizations have the following observances planned and ask that people pay attention to physical distancing as recommended by health officials during the coronavirus pandemic.
River Falls American Legion Post 121 public affairs officer Bill Gnatzig said it's important to have the observance to recognize those who have served and passed away
“We felt that something needed to be done and we’d do what we could, and do it safely and respectfully given what’s going on, but still do what we can,” he said.
The Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs will host an online commemoration including a virtual ceremony, educational resources and public participation tools. The event will be held 9 a.m. Monday, May 25, on the department Facebook page. A commemoration is available at wisvetsmemorialday2020.com.
The pandemic did not stop the annual Field of Honor. City of Red Wing, the National Guard and the local Field of Honor committee members have posted flags at Bay Point Park during Memorial Weekend to honor area veterans.
Flags are spaced apart to maintain social distance, organizers said. Flags are in alphabetical order so visitors may find the names, service records and pictures of friends, families and neighbors who have served or are serving the nation.
The Field of Honor opened Friday evening and will come down Tuesday morning. The list of observances includes:
Due to the current conditions the Memorial Day observance will be condensed and will include a reading of the Gettysburg Address, reading of the departed veterans' names, rifle salute and taps. The tentative schedule is:
8:15 St. Columbkill (Belle creek)
8:45 Evergreen cemetery (Goodhue)
9:15 St. Mary’s (Bellechester)
9:45 St. Peters (Belvidere)
Tentatively 10:15 Union cemetery (Belvidere)
Distancing rules will be in place.
Harding-Darrington Bay City American Legion and Auxiliary will host an event at 10 a.m. at the American Legion Post. Details are still being planned. The event will be broadcasted live on the Bay City American Legion and Auxiliary Facebook page.
The Crain-Ottman American Legion Post 207 and Auxiliary Unit 207 will not hold a formal Memorial Day program. The post honor guard will hold short services while maintaining proper social distances and members ask that public attendees do the same.
The schedule is:
St. John’s Lutheran (Hatchville) 9a.m.
Oakridge (Reed) 9:15 a.m.
Spring Lake (both) 9:45 a.m.
Sacred Heart (Farm Hill) 10:15 a.m.
Old Rock Elm 10:30 a.m.
Poplar Hill 10;45 a.m.
Elmwood Veteran’s Memorial Park 11 a.m.
Observances at St. Patrick’s Cemetery and Willow River Cemetery have been canceled.
American Legion Butler-Harmon Post 80’s website says the post home is closed.
Frank Gilles American Legion Post No. 365 and Auxiliary Unit No. 365 will move forward with cemeteries stops:
9:30 a.m. Free Home
9:50 a.m. Lund
10:10 a.m. Ono
10:30 a.m. Town of Union/Village of Plum City and St. John’s
The names of all known veterans will be read as part of the ceremonial service, followed by the Chaplain’s final prayer, a rifle salute and taps. Post No. 365 will continue to include their scheduled stops at the Plum City High School (11 a.m.) to honor those veterans who lost their lives while serving in the military and outside the Plum City Care Center/The Seasons (11:15 a.m.) to honor the veterans who are homebound.
The service will end with laying a wreath honoring all veterans who are deceased, along with a second wreath honoring those who have been lost at sea during the wars at the Spring Pond Park at 11:30 a.m. A final salute and taps will conclude the Memorial Day Service.
The River Falls American Legion Honor Guard will present Memorial Day colors at area cemeteries:
Kinnickinnic, 7 a.m.
Mann Valley, 7:30 a.m.
Glass Valley, 8 a.m.
Cherma, 8:20 a.m.
St. Bridget’s, 8:45 a.m.;
Greenwood, 10 a.m., colors, taps, and rifle salute.
Somerset American Legion Post 111 will begin Memorial Day with a breakfast for all honor guard members at the post home, 464 County Road VV. Military honors will be conducted at area cemeteries:
St. Anne’s Cemetery, 9:45 a.m.
Veterans park, 10:15 a.m.
Hillside Cemetery, 10:45 a.m.
Emmanuel Lutheran Cemetery, 11:20 a.m.
Pioneer Cemetery, 11:45 a.m.
Boardman Cemetery, 12:30 p.m.
American Legion Post 432 will hold a private event to observe Memorial Day. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Legion asks no public be present to prevent unneeded contact. A video of the service will be posted to the American Legion Post 432 page (@legionpost432) around noon on Memorial Day. The Facebook page will have information on other upcoming events.
8 a.m. short ceremony and prayer at Wanamingo POW/MIA Memorial
9 a.m. parade down Main Street toward the Zumbro River Bridge with a short program at Riverside Park.
9:15 a.m. assembly on Mill Street between Fourth and Fifth Streets and a 9:45 a.m. parade to cemetery
9:55 a.m. bus ride to the cemetery for a program.