ORANGE, Connecticut — Community members came together across Connecticut this Memorial Day weekend to honor and remember veterans who are no longer with us.
The Town of Orange had to cancel its annual parade due to the rainy weather, but they still found a way to hold a special ceremony Sunday. The town moved the event inside the High Plains Community Center to honor local veterans who are no longer with us. The ceremony included a salute, wreath-laying and a reading of the names of veterans from Orange who have passed on.
Orange service members who are still with us, like Dr. Norman Marieb, were also honored. Marieb was named the 2021 Grand Marshall and served in the United States Navy Medical Corps from 1961 to 1963, caring for marines.
“We’re here for those we’ve lost,” Marieb said. “I just think it’s marvelous to see how many people came on this day, just great. It’s a great town.”
Even the youngest of attendees learned about the significance of the holiday. Three 6th graders won an essay contest about why we celebrate Memorial Day; one of them is Turkey Hill student Avery French.
“I now know when it started, its original name and just important events about it, and it makes me feel really good to know that one day I can tell future generations about this,” French told FOX61.
U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) who serves on the Veterans Committee was also in attendance. He said there is more work to be done to make sure veterans at home are taken care of.
“We should leave no veteran behind. We honor the fallen, but they are our inspiration to serve the living veterans who need education, and jobs and, yes, healthcare,” Blumenthal said.
Over in Cheshire, weather canceled the Memorial Day ceremony Sunday, but the volunteer fire department honored six of their members who served or are serving in the military with signs on their red engines.
There are more events still to come Monday honoring service members on Memorial Day, including the Old Saybrook parade.