Memorial Day events slated for Monday in Manistee area

A member of the American Legion Post No. 10 salutes after placing a poppy on the wreaths at the Memorial Day ceremony on Merkey Road.

MANISTEE — Memorial Day events will be held across Manistee County on Monday, remembering those who made the ultimate sacrifice for the United States of America.

In the City of Manistee, a special Memorial Mass at St. Joseph Church will take place at 8 a.m. on Monday, followed by a ceremony put on by the United Veterans Council at 9 a.m. between the Mt. Carmel and Trinity Lutheran cemeteries on Merkey Road in Manistee.

Stan Preidis, secretary/treasurer of the United Veterans Council,  said they will play “Taps” and give a rifle salute, then place poppies or forget-me-nots on the wreaths to honor fallen veterans.

“We have a prayer, fire the rifles and play “Taps”; the poppies stand for the deceased veterans that died in war,” he said. “They started poppy fields in WWI, that’s where they came from.”

Following, there will be a Memorial Day Parade starting at the intersection of Division and River streets in Manistee. The parade will take off down River Street at 10 a.m., with all of the local veterans organizations involved.

“We march over to Veterans Memorial Park and have a bigger ceremony over there,” Preidis said. “We put poppies on the (wreaths). Then, we fire the rifles and play “Taps” again. After that, we will go to Oak Grove Cemetery and repeat the small ceremony.”

At the Veterans Memorial Park ceremony — located at 117 Memorial Drive in Manistee — there will be event speakers including Manistee’s mayor Roger Zielinski.

“The U.S. Coast Guard, at the ceremony down at the gazebo, they bring a boat out and lay a wreath on the water,” Preidis said.

Preidis said the parade always has a great turnout.

“There are not as many people at Merkey Road and Oak Grove Cemetery,” he said. “The main event downtown, there’s always quite a few people.”

Bob Gancarz, commander of the Catholic War Veterans Manistee Post 1847, said during the Mass he will read off names of deceased local veterans.

“There will be a short pause and I will read all of the names of the veterans that died within the last year in the area,” Gancarz said. “This year it will be about 75.”

Brain Kluesner, commander of Manistee’s American Legion Post 10, said they will be marching in the parade with the historic civil war cannon.

“We will marching in the parade with the color guard, and we also have the Civil War cannon in town that has been refurbished,” Kluesner said. “We will be pulling that through the parade, as well. That’s going to be rededicated at the end of June.”

Manistee’s VFW Walsh Post 4499, located at 1211 28th St., will hold a luncheon from noon to 4 p.m. following the ceremonies. Kluesner said the American Legion Post 10, located at 10 Mason St. in Manistee, will also hold a potluck.

Also on Monday, Memorial Day services will be held at 11 a.m. at the Bear Creek VFW Post 6333 — located at 13300 Nine Mile Road in Kaleva. There will be a community potluck following the service; people are asked to bring a dish to pass.

The guest speaker will be Michigan House District 101 Rep. Jack O’Malley (R-Lake Ann).

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Posted by Ashlyn Korienek

Ashlyn is the cops & courts and city reporter for the Manistee News Advocate. You can reach her at (231) 398-3109 or akorienek@pioneergroup.com

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