Monday, May 27, 2019

• Memorial Day 2019

Big blue skies with billowy white clouds, along with unseasonably cool temps were the backdrop of this year's Memorial Day service at Wildomar Cemetery.

It began with Rolling Thunder Bikers Missing Man Formation by Post 1508 Riders Group & Escondido Post 1513 Riders Group, entering the cemetery and making a full lap around the area.
Rolling Thunder as it was passing the Justin Hunt memorial (seen center right).
VFW Post Commander Stever Regalado then introduced Mayor Marsha Swanson who discussed the difference between Veterans Day, Armed Forces Day and Memorial Day.
Mayor Marsha Swanson addressing the crowd.
After an opening prayer by VFW Chaplain Scott Burris, Elsinore HS JROTC & Wildomar Troop 332 raised the flag which was followed by the pledge of allegiance. 

Local scouts help with raising the colors.
We then were treated to the dulcet tones of Jasmine Oliver as she sang a most heartfelt version of our national anthem.
Jasmine Oliver singing The Star Spangled Banner.
Mayor Pro-Tem Dustin Nigg then shared the history of Memorial Day. It was originally Decoration Day which started after the Civil War. It wasn't until 1968 that Congress established the last Monday in May as Memorial Day.
In addition to the history of Memorial Day, Mayor Pro-Tem Nigg also read the names of the five service members from Wildomar that have been killed while serving, before the closing prayer.
The keynote speaker was Assemblywoman Melissa Melendez. There was a bit of levity after she tried to adjust the microphone... which then took three others to help restabilize it.
While the mic was being repositioned, she jokingly quipped, "I'm never going to get invited again."
Her address was about the importance of Memorial Day, and what it really represents. There were many quotable passages to choose from, but I'll select just one, which came towards the end of her speech.

"We have a memorial day because we are a proud nation. [...] We have laid to rest, thousands, but their courage was not buried with them. It lives on eternally in the hearts of every service member who volunteers to put on that uniform. Because we, as Americans, will always fight to protect our way of life, we'll always stand for freedom, we'll always fight to protect and maintain our democracy... and that is the reason that we honor those [that gave all] on Memorial Day."
- Melissa Melendez
Assemblywoman Melissa Melendez as she speaks to the gathering at Wildomar Cemetery. 
The service concluded with the reading of the names of Wildomar's fallen. This list includes: Justin Hunt, Eric Seman, Daniel Parker, Nathan Bouchard and Fernando Hannon along with the ringing of a bell, the laying of a wreath by the VFW Auxiliary, then a closing prayer followed by the playing of Taps.
A close up of the bell used during the ceremony.
The 2019 wreath as presented by the VFW Auxiliary.
•                •                •

America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.

– Abraham Lincoln 

Good News. If Wildomar Rap falters, it will have no bearing on anyone's freedoms... it's just a local blog. ☺
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