Photographs by Mark Brennan/Siuslaw News
May 30, 2018 — Memorial Day is a day for remembrance of those who have died in service to the U.S. In the Siuslaw region, Memorial Day
services were held at the Pioneer Sunset
Cemetery and at the Veteran’s Memorial Park on Monday, May 28. These local events joined with national ceremonies honoring
America’s fallen heroes.
The American Legion, Francis M. Yost Post 59 of Florence and Florence
Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 3232 coordinated ceremonies honoring veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice defending America.
Recognition ceremonies began at 7 a.m. at Pioneer Sunset Cemetery with the raising of the flag to half-staff.
Florence veterans and community members then placed crosses and flags at the gravesites of fallen veterans from World War I onward to Iraq and Afghanistan.
The day’s main recognition ceremony took place a short time later at the Veteran’s Memorial Park on Bay Street.
Representatives from local veterans’ groups spoke briefly to a crowd numbering around 100, before wreaths were placed in the name of fallen veterans on the Siuslaw River by members of U.S. Coast Guard Station Siuslaw River.
The Memorial Day Service also included the dedication of the Fallen Hero Memorial Highway sign honoring Private First Class Brice M. Scott, U.S. Army. Scott was a Florence local who was killed in action in Afghanistan in 2011. The memorial sign will be installed on Highway 101 north of Munsel Lake Road in the coming weeks.
In addition, the Florence Elks Lodge 1858 also held a Memorial Day Program.
Memorial Day has been around in one form or another since 1886. According to the Public Broadcasting System (PBS), it was originally called Decoration Day, from the early tradition of decorating graves with flowers, wreaths and flags.
Memorial Day, held the last Monday in May, recognizes those who have given their life in service to their country. Veterans Day, Nov. 11, honors all veterans who have served or are currently serving the country in the military.
According to AAA, more than 41.5 million Americans traveled over the three-day Memorial Day weekend.