Muskego American Legion Post 356 - 2023 Memorial Day Ceremony

Submitted by David Czysz on Sun, 06/11/2023 - 10:24
2023 Post 356 Memorial Day Ceremony

Image removed.Image removed.MEMORIAL DAY COMMEMORATION

Presented by:

Muskego American Legion Post 356

Welcome and Introductions

This day is sacred with the almost visible presence of those who have gone before us. We honor the memory of those who gave their lives in the service of our country, and of those who have dropped their burdens by the wayside of life and are gone to their eternal rest. May the ceremonies of today deepen our reverence for our departed friends and comrades. Let us renew our pledge of loyalty to our country and its flag. Let us resolve by word and deed to emphasize the privilege and duty of patriotism.

        Opening Prayer - Read by Post Chaplain Gary Stewart

Let us turn to You, Lord, in our grief and in our remembrance of the fallen. Guide us toward a harmonious existence as we honor those who were willing to give up their lives that we may gather here today freely. On this Memorial Day, we pray for peace and for those who gave all.

National Anthem         Ava Balistreri a Muskego High School student

Memorial Day Presentation by Commander Reinke

Originally called Decoration Day, from the early tradition of decorating graves with flowers, wreaths and flags, Memorial Day is a day for remembrance of those who have died in service to our country. It was first widely observed on May 30, 1868, to commemorate the sacrifices of Civil War soldiers, by proclamation of Gen. John A. Logan of the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of former Union sailors and soldiers.

During that first national commemoration, former Union Gen. and sitting Ohio Congressman James Garfield made a speech at Arlington National Cemetery, after which 5,000 participants helped to decorate the graves of the more than 20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers who were buried there.

The future President opened the ceremony with these words, ““We do not know one promise these men made, one pledge they gave, one word they spoke; but we do know they summed up and perfected, by one supreme act, the highest virtues of men and citizens. For love of country, they accepted death, and thus resolved all doubts, and made immortal their patriotism and their virtue.”

This national event galvanized efforts to honor and remember fallen soldiers that began with local observances at burial grounds in several towns throughout the United States following the end of the Civil War, such as the May 1, 1865 gathering in Charleston, South Carolina organized by freed slaves to pay tribute and give proper burial to Union troops.

In 1873, New York was the first state to designate Memorial Day as a legal holiday. By the late 1800s, many more cities and communities observed Memorial Day, and several states had declared it a legal holiday.

After World War I, it became an occasion for honoring those who died in all of America’s wars and was then more widely established as a national holiday throughout the United States.

In 1971, Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act and established that Memorial Day was to be commemorated on the last Monday of May. Several southern states, however, officially commemorate an additional, separate day for honoring the Confederate war dead, sometimes referred to as a Confederate Memorial Day: January 19 in Texas; third Monday in Jan. in Arkansas; fourth Monday in Apr. in Alabama and Mississippi; April 26 in Florida and Georgia; May 10 in North and South Carolina; last Monday in May in Virginia; and June 3 in Louisiana and Tennessee.

God Bless America      Ava Balistreri a Muskego High School student

With the help of our Sergeant at Arms Fred Rahm, we will read the names of our comrades who have departed from us in the past year.


Dennis Dennee            US Army             Vietnam War

John Mooney               US Army             Vietnam War

Peter Wingers             US Army             Vietnam War


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.

Memorial Day is commemorated at Arlington National Cemetery each year with a ceremony in which a small American flag is placed on each grave. Traditionally, the President or Vice President lays a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. About 5,000 people attend the ceremony annually.

Arlington by: Trace Adkins (Sung by First Vice Commander)

I never thought that this is where I'd settle down

I thought I'd die an old man back in my hometown

They gave me this plot of land, me and some other men

For a job well done

There's a big white house sits on a hill just up the road

The man inside, he cried the day they brought me home

They folded up a flag and told my mom and dad

We're proud of your son

And I'm proud to be on this peaceful piece of property

I'm on sacred ground and I'm in the best of company

I'm thankful for those thankful for the things I've done

I can rest in peace, I'm one of the chosen ones, I made it to Arlington

I remember Daddy brought me here when I was eight

We searched all day to find out where my granddad lay

And when we finally found that cross

He said, "Son, this is what it costs to keep us free"

Now here I am a thousand stones away from him

He recognized me on the first day I came in

And it gave me a chill when he clicked his heels

And saluted me

And I'm proud to be on this peaceful piece of property

I'm on sacred ground and I'm in the best of company

And I'm thankful for those thankful for the things I've done

I can rest in peace, I'm one of the chosen ones, I made it to Arlington

And every time I hear, twenty-one guns

I know they brought another hero home, to us

We're thankful for those thankful for the things we've done

We can rest in peace, 'cause we are the chosen ones

We made it to Arlington

Yeah, dust to dust, don't cry for us

We made it to Arlington

Laying of Memorial Wreath               2 members of The Ladies Auxiliary

Closing Prayer (Read by Post Chaplain)

Bless the families of our fallen troops and fill their homes and their lives with Your strength and peace. In union with people of goodwill of every nation, embolden us to answer the call to work for peace and justice, and thus, seek an end to violence and conflict around the globe. We ask this through your name.


It was an honor to be here with you today. We have a few thoughts to leave you with.

 Let us remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice that we might Live in peace. To us is passed the sacred trust that their going was not in vain. Our heritage of Liberty. Justice and freedom will forever be cherished as their perpetual memorial.

We must always remember that it is because of their sacrifices that we enjoy our freedom today.

God bless you all and God bless America.