This weekend, there will be plentiful opportunities for Whidbey residents to remember fallen service members at Memorial Day events all over the island.
Join the Oak Harbor Lions Club and American Legion George Morris Post 129 Monday, May 29 at Maple Leaf Cemetery for the club’s fifth annual Service of Remembrance. Capt. Eric Hanks, commanding officer of Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, will be the keynote speaker, and the colors will be presented by Oak Harbor High School NJROTC, ORION Sea Cadets and Sons of the American Revolution, with Patriot Guard Riders at attention. There will be live music by the Scottish American Military Society, a wreath laying ceremony and an NAS Whidbey Search and Rescue flyover.
“Memorial Day is a relevant and somber holiday that gives us the opportunity to recognize veterans’ sacrifices; our event supports those veterans and their families, who are grieving our nation’s heroes that sacrificed their all for our freedoms,” said Lions Club event coordinator Kelly Davidson. “All attendees to our service (in-person and online) will leave our event feeling they have honored our nation’s heroes, and our youth participating will learn the value and importance of remembering our heritage through traditional, reverent reflection and dedication to mission.”
Maple Leaf Cemetery is located at 1961 Northeast 16th Ave. Gates open at 9 a.m., and the service begins at 10 a.m. This event typically draws more than 400 in-person guests. A livestream of the event can also be viewed on the Oak Harbor Lions Club YouTube channel.
Sunnyside Cemetery in Coupeville will also hold a traditional wreath laying service at 1 p.m. Monday, May 29. The historic pioneer cemetery is located at 90 Cemetery Road.
American Legion is in search of volunteers to help place and retrieve flags at veteran graves at Maple Leaf and Sunnyside cemeteries at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 27 and Tuesday, May 30.
In downtown Coupeville, the celebration will take place on Saturday, May 27 with the Coupeville Chamber of Commerce annual Memorial Day parade. The parade will take place on Front Street in Coupeville at 11 a.m., followed by a picnic at Town Park and a remembrance service and concert.
On the South End, the American Legion Post 141 will hold a service at 11 a.m. on Monday at Bayview Cemetery. The service will feature a speaker and rifle and bugle presentations. A potluck will follow at the American Legion Post 141 building, located at 14096 Highway 525 in Langley.
The Clinton Cemetery will also host a Memorial Day service at 11 a.m. May 29. John R. Kniseley, a retired Navy lieutenant commander, will be the speaker. The event will also include a flag raising by the Boy Scouts, a presentation by the Daughters of the American Revolution, patriotic songs, reading of the veteran’s names and taps.
The Clinton Cemetery is located at 6309 Wilson Place, behind St. Peter’s Lutheran Church.