One hundred years ago, on November 11th of 1919, America celebrated its first Veterans Day, then known as Armistice Day, in commemoration of the ending of the first World War, which ended on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. In 1926, Congress designated the day a National Holiday, and changed the name to honor all Veterans, living and dead, who served their country. There are Veterans Day celebrations all around Oz to attend but, if you can't attend a ceremony, you can also honor veterans with a purchase of a red poppy from an American Legion member. These flowers, which flourished in Europe following WWI, became the symbol of the blood that was shed by so many, inspired by the poem "In Flanders Fields," written by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, M.D. while serving on the front lines.
On Sunday, November 10th from noon - 2, the Rivoli in Cedarburg will host a free screening of the film Dawn of the Red Arrow, which follows the stories of Wisconsin National Guard Soldiers who returned from Europe 100 years ago after nearly two years of service with the 32nd "Red Arrow" Division during World War I, beginning with their journey from their hometowns to the training fields of Texas and then across an ocean to the battlefields of France where they forged a legacy that remains with Wisconsin today. Built with 15,000 volunteer National Guardsmen from 72 Wisconsin communities, the 32nd Division forged the first chapters of its long and proud service to Wisconsin and the United States.
On Veterans Day - Monday, November 11th:
The Landt-Thiel Post 470 will offer a program beginning at 10:30 a.m., followed by a luncheon, at the Legion Hall, located at 601 W. Dekora St. in Saukville.
The Melvin-Wester Post 412 will have a ceremony at the Cedar Grove Belgium High School, located at 50 W Union Ave in Cedar Grove, at 10:15 a.m. Cookies and coffee will be served prior to the service.
The Peter Wollner Post 288 will host a luncheon for veterans and the community at the Legion Hall, located at N57 W481 Hilbert Ave. in Cedarburg at noon.
The Rose-Harms Post 355 will lead a parade from the post, located at 1540 13th Ave., at 10:30 a.m. to Veterans Park, where there will be a program at 11 a.m. A luncheon for veterans and the community will follow at the post. Donations accepted.
The Howard J Schroeder Post 457 will host a ceremony and luncheon at their post, located at 1650 W. Mequon Road, from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
In Flanders FieldsIn 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.