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Communities in region to salute fallen veterans

Communities throughout the region will hold parades, services and other activities during the Memorial Day Weekend.

Memorial Day itself, which this year falls on Monday, May 30, is a day to honor those who died in active military service.

Originally known as Decoration Day, it became an official federal holiday in 1971.

The Lycoming County Veterans Memorial Service in Williamsport kicks off activities Saturday.

On Wednesday morning, a group of 20 people that consisted of on-duty fire crew, off-duty firefighters, retired firefighters and administration placed 380 American flags on the gravestones of the men and women who served in the United States military. City firefighters have come together to place the flags every year over the last 50 years.

“We feel honored to do it,” Williamsport Firefighter Jeff Vogt said in a statement to the Sun-Gazette.

The event at Veterans Memorial Park, West Fourth Street and Wahoo Drive, begins at 11 a.m. with retired Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Earl Hailston as guest speaker.

Martin J. Payne, president of the Lycoming County Veterans Council Inc., and a Vietnam War veteran, will welcome the audience.

The annual event includes patriotic songs, laying of wreaths on war monuments, a rifle salute, and playing of taps.

Howard Wilt, Marine Corps veteran and chairman of the Veterans Memorial Park Commission, will provide an update on the park.

Nick Biddle will sing the National Anthem.

The Gold Star Family Monument is to be dedicated following the regular service.

Services being held on Sunday, May 29 are:

• Picture Rocks parade, 1:30 p.m. Forms at Baptist Church on Center Street and proceeds to cemetery for service. Retired Air Force Senior Master Sgt. Dale Wertman is guest speaker.

• Nippenose Valley Memorial Day services, 1:30 p.m. at Oval Cemetery. Speaker will be Rev. Max Furman, of Antes Fort/Oriole United Methodist Church. Fairplay Brass will perform.

• Cherry Grove Cemetery, Nordmont. Service at 2 p.m. Ham dinner from 10:30 to 1 p.m. at Nordmont Community Hall. Cost is $12 per person.

Services being held Monday, May 30 are:

• Williamsport — Civil War Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Day Ceremony at Grand Army of the Republic (G.A.R.) Circle, Wildwood Cemetery, 9 a.m. The annual event is a tribute to local veterans who served during the Civil War.

• Jersey Shore — Jersey Shore Veterans Council Lost at Sea at Route 44 Bridge, Jersey Shore, 6 a.m.; American Legion Post 36 military service, 7 a.m.; VFW Post 5859 military service, 8 a.m.; cemetery service, 9 a.m.

• Salladasburg — Parade, 11 a.m. Forms on Dochter Street. Veterans honored at Salladasburg United Methodist Church.

• Loganton — Parade, 2 p.m. along Main Street. Patriotic ceremony to follow. Chicken BBQ, 3 p.m. at Sugar Valley Fire Hall, 24 W. Anthony St. Fire company to hold annual raffle drawing later in the afternoon

• Muncy — Parade, 11 a.m. Forms at East Mechanic and North Main streets and ends at cemetery. Graveside service to follow.

• Montoursville — Memorial Day Service at Montoursville Cemetery, 10 a.m.

• Hughesville — Parade, 9 a.m. Service to follow at Pleasant Hills Cemetery with Rev. Jerry Uppling, pastor of Picture Rocks Baptist Church, to speak. In case of rain, service will be held in Hughesville High School auditorium.

• Montgomery — Parade, 9 a.m. Forms at Bower Decker Post 25 American Legion and proceeds south on Broad Street to community park. Service in park to follow.

To honor the more than 66.000 veterans who have fallen in combat since the Vietnam War, Air Force Master Sgt. Leo Knight-Inglesby on Memorial Day will lead a 3.33-mile walk from the Market Street bridge to the Maynard Street bridge along the Susquehanna Riverwalk in Williamsport. The walk begins at 9 a.m.

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