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Remember the fallen

May 27, 2016
Cape Coral Daily Breeze

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.

- Lt. Colonel John McCrae

MD (1872-1918)

"In Flanders Field" was written by a doctor in the Canadian Army in 1915 to mark the death of a 22-year-old comrade-in-arms.

Today, white crosses still serve as a reminder of those who died in service to their country.

And poppies come into prominence again as American troops continue their efforts against terrorist factions that continue to wage war across the world.

As we begin our three-day weekends, plan our barbecues, trips to the beach and visits with friends and family, let us all pause, if only for a moment, to remember those who will not be coming home from fields, deserts and mountains afar.

There are a number of ways to do so this year, including two major services that annually attract hundreds to mark the solemn holiday on Monday:

Here in the Cape, Coral Ridge Funeral Home & Cemetery will host its 35th annual Memorial Day service at 10 a.m., in the Veterans Honor Garden at the cemetery at 1630 SW Pine Island Road.

The Rev. Jack Mulvey, MSGT U.S. Air Force Ret., will serve as the chaplain for the service; Mayor Marni Sawicki will lead the Pledge of Allegiance and read a Proclamation from the city and Gold Star parents and families will be special guests.

As always, a "roll call" of deceased veterans will be read by U.S. Air Force veteran and program chair Chuck Warren.

The service, a tradition in Cape Coral, especially among veterans and veterans' families, involves numerous organizations as well as a variety of activities including a memorial wreath presentation, a ceremonial helicopter fly-over and a military salute.

Another traditional service will be held just over the Midpoint Bridge at Fort Myers Memorial Gardens at 1589 Colonial Blvd.

The service will be held at 9:30 a.m in the Field of Honor.

Shoshana Johnson, U.S. Army POW SPC and USMC SGT Jeff Kyle, brother of American Sniper Navy Seal COP Chris Kyle will join the ceremony.

Flags will be placed on the graves Saturday morning beginning at 8 a.m. and Memorial Gardens invites anyone who may want to help to come out.

Both Memorial Day events are open to the public with refreshments to follow.

Other "big ones" in the Cape on Monday include events at the Southwest Florida Military Museum and Library and the Iraq War Memorial.

The museum will host its Memorial Day actvities from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on its grounds at 4820 Leonard St., opening with a ceremony, continuing with an open house and concluding with a remembrance.

The service at the Iraq War Monument at the Four Mile Cove Ecological Preserve will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and feature a number of guest speakers including U.S. Army Ranger Sgt. Matt Doyle, U.S. Navy Seal MAII Michael Monsoor, Army POW Spc. Shoshana Johnson and Marine Corps Sgt. Jeff Kyle.

Other events around Lee County, including some that are new, may be found in today's Breeze.

May we never forget.

May we ever keep the faith.

- Breeze editorial



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