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Memorial Day programs set for the area on Monday

Area communities set aside time on holiday to remember those killed while serving in the armed forces.

Navy veteran James Braun, who served from 1953-57, pulls American flags from a cargo container bin as veterans and volunteers work together to place 100 American flags out for display at the Flags of Honor Memorial in Willmar on Friday, May 27, 2022.
Navy veteran James Braun, who served from 1953-57, pulls American flags from a cargo container bin as veterans and volunteers work together to place 100 American flags out for display at the Flags of Honor Memorial in Willmar on Friday, May 27, 2022.
Macy Moore / West Central Tribune
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WILLMAR — Willmar veterans raised the Flags of Honor on Friday on the east side of Willmar Lake. Squads of veterans from the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Disabled American Veterans, AMVets and others placed flags on the graves of every veteran in the area. On Memorial Day, the veterans will visit each cemetery where they will read the roll call, fire a rifle salute and play "Taps."

Allan Simon ties off a halyard after raising an American flag at the Flags of Honor Memorial on Friday, May 27, 2022, in preparation for Memorial Day on Monday.
Allan Simon ties off a halyard after raising an American flag at the Flags of Honor Memorial on Friday, May 27, 2022, in preparation for Memorial Day on Monday.
Macy Moore / West Central Tribune

About 2,000 flags were put on veterans’ graves.

The schedules for the routes are as follows:

Willmar route: Vinje 7:45 a.m., Bethel 8, St. Mary’s 8:15, Calvary 8:30, Homewood Park 8:45, Flags of Honor site 9.

Northwest route: St. John’s 7:30 a.m., Salem Covenant 7:45, Mamrelund 8, Lundby 8:15, Church of God 8:30, Nannestad 8:40, Lake Florida 9:05 and Solomon Lake 9:15.

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Northeast route: Long Lake 7:20 a.m., Eagle Lake 7:35, State Hospital 7:45, Cloverleaf 8:05, Tripolis 8:30, Oak Park 8:40, Oak Hill 8:50 and Svea 9:15.

Dale Johnson raises an American flag at the Flags of Honor Memorial in Willmar on Friday, May 27, 2022.
Dale Johnson raises an American flag at the Flags of Honor Memorial in Willmar on Friday, May 27, 2022.
Macy Moore / West Central Tribune

Memorial Day services

On Monday, the observance and program is at 11 a.m. at Fairview Cemetery in Willmar.

Auxiliary members and others will gather near the cemetery chapel at 10:30 a.m. to walk as a group to the observance to honor fallen comrades. Everyone is welcome to set up their lawn chairs and then join them for the short walk.

Legion Commander Jon Olson will give the welcome. Pastor Dean Johnson will give both the invocation and benediction.

There will be an introduction of Gold Star parents and other special guests.

A volunteer grabs an American flag to be put out on display at the Flags of Honor Memorial in Willmar on Friday, May 27, 2022.
A volunteer grabs an American flag to be put out on display at the Flags of Honor Memorial in Willmar on Friday, May 27, 2022.
Macy Moore / West Central Tribune

The program will include the presentation of General Logan’s orders by Wyatt Dahline and Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address by Brian Gislason.

The address will be given by Air Force Lt. Col. Doug Kaveene.

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There will be a silent tribute to the unknown soldiers, and a wreath will be placed in their honor.

“In Flanders Field” will be read by Wyatt Larson, followed by the reading of the roll call of deceased veterans for the past year by Jon Lindstrand.

The national anthem will be played by the Willmar Senior High School band and there will be a flag-raising ceremony.

The Veterans Central Council Honor Guard will provide the rifle salute, followed by the band playing taps.

In case of inclement weather, the program will be held at the National Guard Armory.

Fairview Cemetery will have its second annual Memorial Day picnic near the chapel immediately after the program in Willmar. Attendees have the choice of a brat or hot dog with chips and a beverage for a free-will donation.

Marine veteran John Larson rolls a container of folded American flags out to the Flags of Honor Memorial as workers put up 100 American flags in observance of Memorial Day on Friday, May 27, 2022
Marine veteran John Larson rolls a container of folded American flags out to the Flags of Honor Memorial as workers put up 100 American flags in observance of Memorial Day on Friday, May 27, 2022.
Macy Moore / West Central Tribune

The flags of honor will be taken down at 5 p.m. Monday, and the veterans will return to the cemeteries to remove the flags, weather permitting.

Families of deceased veterans in the Willmar area are reminded that extra flags and star markers for veterans’ graves are available.

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If a veteran’s grave does not have a star marker and flag, one can be obtained in front of the chapel at Fairview Cemetery. There will also be some available at the American Legion and VFW in Willmar if needed at other cemeteries

Gordon Keller, from left, and Wayne Emberland work together to raise an American flag at the Flags of Honor Memorial in Willmar on Friday, May 27, 2022.
Gordon Keller, from left, and Wayne Emberland work together to raise an American flag at the Flags of Honor Memorial in Willmar on Friday, May 27, 2022.
Macy Moore / West Central Tribune

Regional celebrations

Appleton: The Memorial Day program will begin at 9 a.m. Monday at the Appleton City Cemetery. Gordon Lindquist will give the address.

Belgrade: The Memorial Day program will begin at 11 a.m. Monday at BBE High School. The BBE Voice of Democracy winners will be the speakers. It will be followed by a parade to the VFW Club. A Memorial Day meatball dinner will be served from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Crow River Lutheran Church, south of Belgrade. $10 adults, $5 ages 5-12, under 5 eat free.

Benson: The Memorial Day program will be at 10 a.m. Monday at the city cemetery. Benson mayor Terri Collins will give the opening remarks.

Bird Island: The Memorial Day program will begin at 8:45 a.m. outside at St. Mary’s school flagpole.

Brooten: The Memorial Day program will begin at 10 a.m. Monday at Memorial Park on Highway 55. Pastor Gary Mills, interim past at Trinity/West Lake Johanna Lutheran Church, will give the address.

Clara City: The Memorial Day program will be at 9:30 a.m. Monday at Bethany Reformed Church.

Clontarf: The Memorial Day program will be at 8 a.m. Monday at St. Malachy’s Cemetery.

Danube: The Memorial Day program will be at 9 a.m. Monday at the Danube school.

Darwin: The Memorial Day program will be at 10:30 a.m. Monday at Darwin Veteran Memorial Park. Retired U.S. Army Sgt. Tom Hauer will give the address.

Dawson: The Memorial Day parade will form at the city library at 10 a.m. Monday and go to the Dawson Cemetery for the 11 a.m. program. The address will be given by retired Lt. Col. Kristine Shelstad of the Minnesota National Guard.

Granite Falls: The Memorial Day service will be at 10 a.m. at the Legion.

Following approximately 10 minutes of work by volunteers and veterans, 100 American flags wave in the early-morning breeze at the Flags of Honor Memorial in Willmar on Friday, May 27, 2022.
Following approximately 10 minutes of work by volunteers and veterans, 100 American flags wave in the early-morning breeze at the Flags of Honor Memorial in Willmar on Friday, May 27, 2022.
Macy Moore / West Central Tribune

Kerkhoven: The Memorial Day program will be at 10 a.m. Monday at Hillside Cemetery. Pastor Jonathan Wilson of Salem Covenant Church will give the address.

Litchfield: The Memorial Day parade will begin at 9:15 a.m. Monday at Prairie Park and proceed to Lake Ripley Cemetery for the program. The annual Memorial Day picnic will be from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Monday at the Litchfield Opera House, adults $10, ages 12 and under $5, available at the door.

Madison: The Memorial Day program will be at 11 a.m. Monday at the cemetery. SSG, John Parsons, Minnesota Army National Guard, will give the address.

Maynard: Memorial Day will begin with coffee time at 10 a.m. followed by the program at 10:30 a.m. Monday at the Maynard Events Center.

Milan: The Memorial Day program will be at 10 a.m. Monday at the Milan Community Center, followed by services at Kviteseid Lutheran/Milan Methodist Cemetery and one at Big Bend Lutheran Cemetery.

Montevideo: The Memorial Day program will be at 11 a.m. at Sunset Memorial Cemetery.

New London: The Memorial Day service for vets lost at sea will be at 10:30 a.m. Monday at the Mill Pond.

Olivia: The Memorial Day program will be at 11 a.m. Monday at the National Guard Armory. There will be a dedication ceremony of the Veteran’s Memorial at Kubesh Park at 3 p.m.

Paynesville: The Memorial Day program will be at 10 a.m. Monday at the Paynesville High School.

Raymond: The Memorial Day parade will begin at 9 a.m. Monday at the school and proceed to Fairview Cemetery for the 116th annual program. The parade will reassemble and proceed to St. John’s Lutheran Cemetery for another program. The Harvest Festival committee will be grilling and serving hot dogs, along with beans, chips, salad and beverage at the fire hall from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Free-will donations to support this year’s Harvest Festival.

Renville: The Memorial Day program will be at 10 a.m. Monday at the Renville Community Center.

Sacred Heart: The Memorial Day program will be at 9 a.m. Monday at the Sacred Heart Community Center.

Spicer: The Memorial Day program will be at 9:45 a.m. at Pirrotta Park in downtown Spicer.

Donna Middleton started working at the West Central Tribune in 1975 and has been the news assistant since 1992. She compiles the arts, health, farm and community page calendars, as well as rewrites and works on the special sections.
She can be contacted at dmiddleton@wctrib.com or phone 320-214-4341.
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