Lansdale, Hatfield and Harleysville have their respective Memorial Day parades and ceremonies, but there's another fledgling remembrance that has been occurring in Towamencin Township.
Township supervisors Dan Littley, Jim Sinz and David Mosesso, township manager Rob Ford and Towamencin Township Police Sgt. John Cutrone - all veterans - held a flag-raising ceremony at the memorial at Firehouse Park on Bustard Road Monday morning in honor of Memorial Day.
Also in attendance were Officers Pat Horne and Jim Hanrahan, police Lt. Jeff Kratz, resident Bob Di Domizio and Vietnam veteran and township resident Kevin Keenan.
"Memorial Day was first brought about by General Order 11, signed by General John Logan, commander of the Grand Army of the Republic," said Littley, a veteran of the U.S. Air Force. "It was declared on the fifth of May 1868 that the 30th of May would be Memorial Day to remember those who had fallen in every insurrection of the United States."
Littley said it was initially proclaimed to honor those who died in the Civil War. After World War I, Memorial Day was changed to commemorate all Americans who died in all wars of all time.
Littley said the day is always celebrated on the last Monday in May since Congress passed the National Holiday Act of 1971. The act ensured a three-day weekend for Federal holidays.
When we think about Memorial Day today, we think of the beginning of summer, picnics and three-day sales," Littley said. "What is forgotten is it is a time to honor those who have fallen in all conflicts of the United States."
Memorial Day is a day to remember the 1,294,475 people who gave their lives for our country, Littley said. Americans should also remember and respect their local American Legions, Veterans of Foreign Wars posts and the Buddy Poppy program.
"They made the ultimate sacrifice so we can enjoy the right to form and be here today," Littley said.
With that, Horne, Hanrahan and Cutrone raised the flag to half-mast as attendees saluted in its honor.
Littley thanked the police for sharing in the remembrance and service.
"Hopefully, this will continue to be an annual event and get larger as time goes on," Littley said.
Mossesso said he wished more residents and veterans would come out to the event here on out.
"We need to get the word out," he said. "I think it gets overshadowed (by other communities' events)."
Littley said the township hopes to have a similar ceremony on July 4th.
"We will work at it," Littley said. "We definitely want to see it expand."
Keenan said he was unaware of the event and happened to be driving by Firehouse Park before the start of the ceremony. He served in the First Air Cavalry Division, 371st Radio Company during Vietnam.
"This is nice, but small. I wish there was more people," Keenan said. "More awareness needs to be made."