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Oneida County Memorial Day Ceremony Returns After Year Away with New Location


While many look forward to Memorial Day weekend as a break and a way to kick off the summer season, the Oneida County Veterans Service Office hopes you’ll take time to remember why you have the day off.

“It’s not a ‘happy Memorial Day’ holiday. So many people say those words. It has nothing to do with those of us veterans who are still alive,” said Tammy Javenkoski, the Oneida County Veterans Service Officer.

She said she’s always surprised how many people don’t understand the meaning of Memorial Day.

“We are honoring the men and women that sacrificed their lives and if people don’t know that I really encourage them to attend a ceremony,” said Javenkoski.

After a year away because of the COVID, Oneida County will be hosting a Memorial Day Ceremony again this year.

It will be on May 31st at 10:30 a.m. at Mike Webster Stadium at Rhinelander High School next to the Hodag Dome.

“There are a lot of bleachers. We’d like people to social distance if possible. We recommend they wear masks,” said Javenkoski. “Another thing to note is that we are going to have chairs on the track. Those chairs are for elderly and disabled people, so they don’t have to climb up into the bleachers. We want those chairs saved for people that really need them.”

The Rhinelander High School band and choir will perform. There will be several speakers. The AmVets/American Legion Honor Guard and VFW Honor will be doing smaller ceremony at a couple local cemeteries before the one at Mike Webster Stadium.

This is their schedule:

8:00 a.m.  VFW Honor Guard at Newbold Cemetery

8:30 a.m.  AmVets/American Legion Honor Guard at Northland Memorial Park

9:00 a.m.  VFW Honor Guard at Forest Home Cemetery

9:00 a.m.  AmVets/American Legion Honor Guard at Nativity of Our Lord Cemetery

If people can’t attend the one in Rhinelander on Memorial Day, Javenkoski encourages people to find a ceremony closer to home to honor our fallen service men and women.

“If we can’t give them one, thank them on one day, then we’ve got issues.  That’s what we’re doing, I think people really need to think about that and understand the meaning of it,” she said.

All participants and attendees are strongly encouraged to wear a mask, and social distancing must be maintained. Because this is an outside ceremony, in the case of inclement weather, the ceremony will be canceled.

Katie Thoresen is WXPR's News Director/Vice President.
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