Veterans honor California's Vietnam War fallen
Several Veterans Day ceremonies are planned Saturday in the Sacramento area.
According to history.com, Veterans Day originated as Armistice Day on Nov. 11, 1919, the first anniversary of the end of World War I. Congress passed a resolution in 1926 for an annual observance, and Nov. 11 became a national holiday beginning in 1938.
A sampling of area Veterans Day events:
▪ Sacramento: The city of Sacramento holds its annual parade beginning at 11 a.m. The parade will travel along Capitol Mall between Third and Ninth streets. The event, which in the past has drawn thousands of spectators, features veterans as well as military organizations, high school marching bands, vintage military vehicles and community groups such as local Boy and Girl Scout troops.
Korean War veterans will be honored at a ceremony beginning at 11 a.m. at Heritage Park, 2481 Heritage Lane, in North Natomas.
▪ Folsom: The Wayne A. Spence Folsom Veterans Day Parade begins at 9 a.m. on East Bidwell Street in front of the HomeGoods/Target parking lot. The parade will travel northwest along East Bidwell Street to turn right on Coloma Street, then right on Natoma Street to finish at the Folsom Community Center, 52 Natoma St. A brief memorial ceremony will take place immediately following the parade, in Folsom City Lions Park at the Veterans Memorial.
▪ Rancho Cordova: The city’s Veterans Day Observance begins at 10 a.m. at the Sacramento VA Medical Center, 10535 Hospital Way. The event’s theme: “Argonne to Afghanistan: 100 years of the American Veteran.” The event will feature the Rancho Cordova River City Concert Band, a brick dedication ceremony, refreshments and more.
▪ Citrus Heights: The American Legion Post 637 Veterans Day Ceremony begins at 10:30 a.m. at the Sylvan Cemetery, 7401 Auburn Blvd., with a procession of veterans along the “Avenue of Flags,” concluding the Veterans Memorial. A memorial service will follow at 11 a.m. in the cemetery’s gazebo.
▪ Elk Grove: Ceremonies begin at 10 a.m. at the Elk Grove Shopping Center, 9108 Elk Grove Florin Road. At 11 a.m., the 16th annual Elk Grove Veterans Day Parade will proceed south on Elk Grove Florin Road to Elk Grove Regional Park. City officials advise that area streets will be closed from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for the events.
▪ Rocklin: The Rocklin American Legion Post 620 and the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 904 will honor veterans with an event at the Rocklin Cemetery, 4090 Kannasto St. Legion Post 620 will be joined by the Whitney High School Junior ROTC Color Guard for the Posting of the Colors and the Parker Whitney Elementary School chorus for the singing of the National Anthem. Boy Scout Troupe 29 will also place flags and crosses on graves at the cemetery.
▪ Placerville: Ceremonies, featuring a flyover of historic World War II Warbirds, will begin at 11 a.m. at the El Dorado County Veterans Monument, 300 Fair Lane, Placerville. Command Sgt. Maj. Joseph R. Menard, a combat engineer, will be the keynote speaker, discussing the contributions of Army engineers during war and peace.
On Sunday, a newly installed Vietnam Memorial Monument will be dedicated at 1 p.m. at the corner of Main Street and Bedford Avenue, across the street from the historic courthouse in downtown Placerville. The monument features plaques honoring 21 local servicemen who died in the Vietnam War. They originally were installed in the sidewalk along Main Street, but many were displaced or had to be removed over the years. Placerville Community Pride raised funds to install the plaques in a permanent monument.
▪ Auburn: The city’s event honors post-9/11 veterans. A parade will begin at 10:45 a.m. at the corner of Lincoln Way and Cleveland Street and will proceed down Lincoln Way. The parade will pause at 11 a.m. the Central Square. There will be a brief patriotic ceremony with the release of doves, followed by a fly-over (weather permitting), a three volley rifle salute followed by taps. The parade will resume onto High Street and end at the Gold Country Fairgrounds.
Anthony Sorci: 916-321-1051.