Remember the fallen

Memorial Day observance will be Monday in uptown Clinton
PHOTO ABOVE, The distinctive “V” for Veterans monument in uptown Clinton will have its 10th anniversary observance on Monday. - File photo

TODAY: Ten years later, the “V” - and poppies - still honor all Veterans


The American Legion Auxiliary invites everyone to attend the Celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the presentation of the Veterans Monument on Monday.

Planned in conjunction with the May 29 Memorial Day observance in uptown Clinton, the celebration will mark a decade since the May 28, 2007, dedication of this monument. The Memorial Day observance, starting promptly at 10 a.m., will be sponsored by the American Legion Auxiliary Post 56, the VFW Auxiliary and the City of Clinton. This Memorial Day observance honors all veterans, “who gave the last full measure of devotion.”

In conjunction with the memorial observance, the American Legion Auxiliary will distribute red poppies, a symbol of remembrance, Made by disabled veterans, with donations going back to groups that assist these veterans, the red paper flowers represent the poppies of Flanders Field in Europe.

The poppy, in place of the daisy, was chosen on Sept. 29, 1920 by the American Legion National Convention in Cleveland as the memorial flower for all veterans.

The poem “We Shall Not Sleep,” later renamed “In Flanders Fields” was written by Colonial John McCrae, a surgeon with the Canadian First Brigade Artillery. He was inspired by the rows and rows of makeshift crosses following the battle of Ypres in Belgium in 1915, then became severely ill and died of pneumonia and meningitis in 1918. His poem was published in England, and McRae was buried in the cemetery of Wimeraux, near Flanders Fields. 

Later came the efforts to have the poppy designated the veterans‘ remembrance flower, and each part of the flower - red petals, yellow and black center, green stem and the stem itself - are assigned meaning in the American Legion and Auxiliary’s “Symbolism of the Poppy.”

IN FLANDERS FIELDS POEM The World’s Most Famous WAR MEMORIAL POEM By Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae In Flanders fields the poppies blow Between the crosses, row on row, That mark our place: and in the sky The larks still bravely singing fly Scarce heard amid the guns below. We are the dead: Short days ago, We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow, Loved and were loved: and now we lie In Flanders fields! Take up our quarrel with the foe To you, from failing hands, we throw The torch: be yours to hold it high If ye break faith with us who die, We shall not sleep, though poppies grow In Flanders fields Composed at the battlefront on May 3, 1915 during the second battle of Ypres, Belgium

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