Originally called “Decoration Day”, and celebrated on May 30th, the day was created to honor Civil War dead. It has since been expanded to honor all veterans who have died in service to the United States; and Memorial Day is now observed on the last Monday of May — which this year happens to BE on May 30th.
In addition to national observances, many local communities will hold Memorial Day services in Northwest Iowa.
In Sheldon, flags will be displayed at Sheldon City Park, weather permitting. Volunteers are needed to help put the flags out at 7:00 AM and take them back down at 5:30 PM. Twenty-five to thirty volunteers are needed. If you are able to help, you are asked to meet at the City Park.
Sheldon American Legion McGlothlen-Cowie Post #145 will be holding Memorial Day Services at the Sheldon High School at 10:00 AM in the auditorium. The public is invited to come out and attend the free service honoring our veterans.
In Sioux Center, the Memorial Day Parade starts at 9:15 AM at the Sioux Center Public Library on Highway 75, and will process toward Memory Gardens Cemetary. Veterans will be honored. The Sioux Center High School band will play. The color guard, firing squad, scouts, youth groups, and the saddle club will take part, as will bicyclists and bikes in the bike decorating contest. Pastor Ryan Govig from New Life Church will give the invocation. Bob Hoogeveen of Sheldon will speak. Plus a men’s quartet will perform. There will be a flag raising ceremony, and the roll of honor for the dead will be read. You are asked to bring lawn chairs.
In Sibley, the Memorial Day ceremony will begin at 11 AM at the Holman Township Cemetery. American Legion Post 324 and VFW Post 7373 are in charge of services. The speaker will be retired Air Force Colnel Patrick Hatting. The Sibley/Ocheyedan High School band will play. You are encouraged to bring lawn chairs. In case of rain the ceremony will be moved to the American Legion building in Sibley.
The American Legion Post 470 in Melvin invites everyone to observe Memorial Day services at Baker cemetery, two miles east and two miles north of Melvin beginning at 10:30 AM on Monday, May 30th. Those attending are urged to bring lawn chairs for their comfort. In case of inclement weather, the ceremonies will be held in the American Legion Community Center in Melvin.
At Rock Rapids, the new Veterans Memorial will be dedicated during the Memorial Day ceremony at Riverview Cemetery. It will start at 10 AM. Rock Rapids VFW Post 6960 and American Legion Rex Strait Post 103 and their auxiliaries will participate, as will Boy Scout Troop 190. The Central Lyon High School Band will perform. Representative and veteran John Wills will be the speaker. You are asked to bring lawn chairs. In the event of rain, the ceremony will be moved to the Forster Community Center.
The George American Legion, Jack Souter Post 404 will put up the Avenue of Flags at the Evergreen Lawn Cemetary in George at 7 AM on Memorial Day. They will take them down at 4 PM. Listen to KIWA in the event of rain for any updates. The Memorial Day service will start at 10 AM at the George/Little Rock High School, and will proceed to the cemetery for the laying of the wreath and honoring all veterans with a special honor this year for four vets who served their country. Doug Hilbrands is the speaker. The George-Little Rock High School band will play, under the direction of Mark Swartz.
As always, the United States Flag will be flown at half-staff until noon on Memorial Day, and it should then be raised to full height from noon until sundown.
The US Flag Code says that the flag, when flown at half-staff, should be first hoisted to the peak for an instant and then slowly lowered to the half-staff position.