Memorial Day remembrance events set for communities

The tradition of remembrance for those who have died serving their country, Memorial Day, originated during the Civil War when more Americans lost their lives than all other wars combined.

Lacey Thompson
Lacey Thompson

The tradition of remembrance for those who have died serving their country, Memorial Day, originated during the Civil War when more Americans lost their lives than all other wars combined.

On May 5, 1868 General John Logan declared, "The 30th of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village and hamlet churchyard in the land."

Services will be held at area communities Monday, May 30 to observe Memorial Day.

In Park Rapids, a Memorial Day service will start at 9:30 a.m. Monday at the Park Rapids Area High School auditorium.

After music performed by the Park Rapids Area High School Band, Bill Gilchrist will play "The Pipes" during the entrance of Gold Star parents.


This year's Gold Star parents are Erland and Joyce Alto, Alfred and Erna Kable, and Robert and Christina Longfors.

Second Lieutenant Lacey (Thompson) Romie will give this year's address.

She was born in Virginia and enlisted in the Minnesota Army National Guard in April 2005 as a junior at Grand Rapids High School.

She graduated from Fort Huachuca's Intelligence Analysts School in the same year and joined the 1st/34th BCT out of Bloomington.

In 2007, Romie was attached to the 2nd/136th INF in Moorhead and attended Concordia College for undergraduate school and ROTC at North Dakota State University.

She graduated with degrees in Spanish and International Business, with an emphasis in finance. Romie was commissioned into the Minnesota Army Reserve National Guard May 1, 2011 and branched quartermaster.

Romie lives in Moorhead with her husband, Staff Sergeant Nicholas Romie.

The Park Rapids service will also include a call to order by Commander Gary Schwartz, an invocation by Chaplain Art Wood and an armed forces salute by the band. Trisha (Wood) Glanzer will provide special music.


Following the service, there will be a parade to Red Bridge Park for a floral tribute at Fish Hook River. From there, the service will continue at the All-Veterans Memorial Park on U.S. Highway 71 south, where the Ladies Auxiliary and Blue Star Mothers will present wreaths and a memorial prayer will be led by Chaplain Wood.

The program concludes with a flag folding ceremony, flag disposal and taps.

The Park Rapids American Legion Otto Hendrickson Post 212 and Park Rapids Legion Auxiliary sponsor the memorial service.

n The Akeley Harold Harris VFW Post Color Guard will conduct Memorial Day services at 9 a.m. at the Akeley Cemetery, 9:30 a.m. at the White Oak Cemetery, 10 a.m. at Lemon Cemetery and 10:30 a.m. in Nevis.

The program includes a prayer service led by Pastor Harley Kietzman, lying of the wreaths and a 21-gun salute. The services conclude with Taps, played by Josh Kietzman.

Lunch will follow at the VFW.

n Menahga VFW Post 6206 will present a Memorial Day Service at 10 a.m. at the Menahga School gymnasium. The program includes a presentation of flags by the Menahga VFW Post 6206 Color Guard.

The program includes the National Anthem and other musical selections, a role call of deceased veterans, prayer and placing of a wreath by Geraldine Olson in honor of Clarence Olson.


A ceremony will follow immediately after the program at the cemetery. Lunch will be served at the Menahga VFW.

n The Anderson-Black Legion and Auxiliary and the Laporte-Benedict VFW will present a Memorial Day program at 10 a.m. at the Laporte School.

A short ceremony will be held at the Evergreen Cemetery at Kabekona at 9 a.m. and at St. Theodore's Catholic Cemetery on the north side of Highway 200 will be held at 9:30 a.m.

Following the main program at the school, a short tribute to those lost at sea will take place at the public landing on Garfield Lake in Laporte.

Services will conclude at the Lakeport Cemetery with Taps.

All are welcome.

n The In Their Own Words Veterans Museum in Perham, the only museum in the country dedicated entirely to preserving oral histories of American veterans, is offering free admission on Memorial Day.

The exhibits present dramatic audio-visual exhibits and documentaries based on interviews with veterans.


A traveling exhibit, Kaddish in Wood, features carvings by Dr. Herbert Savel.

Trained in German woodcarving techniques, Savel has created three-dimensional reliefs based on Holocaust era photos of Nazi victims, mostly children.

The exhibit is a poignant reminder of why Americans have fought and died in defense of freedom.

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