Fairfield and its surrounding communities have planned Memorial Day ceremonies to honor those who gave their lives in service to the country.
Fairfield?s Avenue of Flags will be flying Friday morning through Monday afternoon in Central Park to honor local deceased veterans.
Dan Callahan, commander of the Dimmitt Vorhies VFW Post 2271 in Fairfield, said volunteers are needed to help post and later retire the Avenue of Flags in Central Park.
Volunteers should be at the VFW before 6:30 a.m. Friday to help put up the flags. A free breakfast will be served to the volunteers.
Volunteers should meet again at 3 p.m. Monday to take down the flags and return them to the VFW.
The listing of deceased servicemen and servicewomen, whose families and friends have contributed to the Avenue of Flags in their memory, will be published in The Fairfield Ledger Friday.
Those who would like to contribute to the Avenue of Flags should contact the VFW at 472-9282.
The Memorial Day service in Fairfield is planned at 10 a.m. Monday in Central Park, with guest speaker 1st Sgt. (Retired) Charles ?CJ? Madison, a 24-year veteran of the Iowa Army National Guard.
According to organizer Staff Sgt. (Retired) Amanda Northup of the VFW in Fairfield, the Fairfield Municipal Band will be in the Ron Prill Band Bandstand at 9:30 a.m. to begin performing at about 9:50 a.m. Jim Kennedy, of the Dimmitt Vorhies VFW Post 2271, will give the welcome.
The service also will include Fairfield High School seniors Mich Putnam and David Wallingford reciting Logan?s General Order, and Lincoln?s Gettysburg Address, respectively.
The Bowman siblings, Baylee, Brynna, Blair and Brittan, accompanied by the municipal band, will sing ?God Bless America? and the national anthem ?The Star-Spangled Banner,? and Dick Green, a minister from the Victory Fellowship Church in Brighton, will give the invocation and the benediction.
Northup said when the program ends, a procession will form on the west side of Central Park to march to the Jefferson County Veterans Monument on the Jefferson County Courthouse lawn. Patriotic organizations, including the Boys Scouts and Girl Scouts, along with all citizens are welcome to join the parade and attend the services at the monument. An Area 10-15 Transportation bus will be available on the square to transport handicapped and senior citizens to and from the service at the monument.
The service at the monument begins with the hymn ?Near My God to Thee,? and Green will give the invocation.
Representatives of several local patriotic organizations will lay wreaths at the monument, followed by the hymn ?Rock of Ages.?
Sgt. 1st Class Jeff Six and Sgt. Jake Richard, of the Iowa Command Brass Band, will play taps, the bugle call played at military funerals, to conclude the ceremony.
Northup said in the event of inclement weather, the service location would move indoors. If the move is necessary, the announcement will be made between 7-8 a.m. Monday on the local KMCD radio station.
Lockridge will honor those who have served during its annual Memorial Day ceremony set for Saturday.
?This is not just an event for veterans,? said Paul Corbin, Lockridge Veterans Association coordinator and member of the Jefferson County Veterans Affairs Commission. ?We all know someone who went off to war to fight for the liberties of our country or to provide support for the efforts of war, which are felt by the members of that family, and in some cases, the entire community.?
At 7:30 a.m., the honor guard will meet at the Lockridge Community Center to march to the Lockridge Cemetery.
At 8 a.m., the Calvery Baptist Men?s Duet, along with those gathered, will sing ?The Star-Spangled Banner? as the flag is raised. Corbin will provide opening commentary and a rifle team will fire a volley of rounds, followed by taps played by Jeremy Crile.
After dismissal from the cemetery at 8:15 a.m., those in attendance will return to the community center for fellowship and refreshments including coffee, tea, juice and pastries.
At 8:45 a.m., the program begins with attendees receiving updates on the local veterans? memorial, then Prisoners of War and those Missing in Action will be recognized by a moment of silence.
Those in attendance will enjoy a special vocal presentation, followed by the program ?Have You Forgotten,? and the posting of the Circle of Flags.
Anyone interested in being a member of the honor guard should contact Corbin at 319-696-2760.
?Community participation is always encouraged and appreciated,? he said.
In case of inclement weather, the program will be inside the community center.
The Richland Memorial Day service is planned at 1:30 p.m. Monday at the Central Park shelter house on the Richland square, announced organizer Kerry Hadley.
The keynote speaker will be Sgt. Alex Rebling, an eight-year member of the 34th Army Band of the Iowa Army National Guard. Rebling serves as a guitarist, vocalist and drum major.
In 2013, he volunteered for active duty and served at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas, where he received the Army Commendation Medal with Oak Leaf cluster.
Rebling?s other commendations are the Iowa Commendation Medal, The Global War on Terror Medal, the Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal with Oak Leaf cluster, the National Defense Service Medal and the Army Service Ribbon.
Rebling received his Bachelor of Arts in secondary English education from the University of Northern Iowa in 2015. He currently teaches sixth- and seventh-grade English language arts at Pekin Middle School, where he also coaches middle school baseball and football. He and his fiancé plan to move to their new home in Fairfield this summer.
The ceremony begins with the invocation delivered by the Rev. Tim Hadley, pastor of Trinity Friends Church in Richland and outgoing principal of Pekin High School, who also served in the U.S. Navy.
The American Legion Post No. 504 will present the colors, and the Pekin High School chorus will sing ?The Star Spangled Banner.?
Kerry Hadley will recite The Pledge of Allegiance, followed by the presentation of ?In Flanders Fields? by the Pekin chorus.
Pekin chorus will sing ?God Bless the USA,? followed by The Gettysburg Address by Hunter Lucas.
Following Rebling?s presentation, Hadley will introduce the veterans of the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard who are present, and Roger Frakes, chaplain of American Legion Post 504, will read the names of the departed comrades this past year.
The ceremony will conclude with the benediction by Tim Hadley, a salute by the American Legion Post 50 firing squad, and taps played by Derrick White.
Van Buren County
Several communities in the Villages of Van Buren County are planning Memorial Day ceremonies.
The Historic Presbyterian Church in Bentonsport will host a program of music and stories honoring all veterans who gave their lives to protect the country at 6:30 p.m. Sunday. Everyone is welcome to the free program.
Douds American Legion Auxiliary will host a Memorial Day service and potluck dinner Monday evening at the Douds Community Center.
The free potluck dinner will be at 6 p.m. Everyone is asked to bring a dish to share.
The Memorial Day service begins at 7:15 p.m., followed by the traditional walk to the Des Moines River Bridge.
The annual Glasgow Cemetery Memorial Day Service will be 2 p.m. Monday.
A guest speaker is being scheduled.
The public is invited and reminded to bring lawn chairs.
Lambirth Cemetery?s annual Memorial Day ceremony will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday at the cemetery.
Rock Creek Church
As it has done for many years, at 2 p.m. Sunday, the Rock Creek Church in Ollie will host its annual Memorial Day Service.
The service will be inside.
This year?s speaker is Danny Cary from Fairfield.
Everyone is invited to attend the event. A free-will-offering will be collected.
For more information on the event, contact Kenny Van Ness at 641-451-1778.