MEMORIAL DAY CEREMONY
SAN FRANCISCO NATIONAL CEMETERY (5/29/06)
It has been a couple of years now that I have gone to the Presidio of San Francisco and more precise to the San Francisco National Cemetery at the Presidio to witness the ceremony to honor our fallen war heroes on Memorial Day.
This year the turn out was excellent and more because our Nation is at war in a couple of countries.
I witnessed the United States Flag being hoisted on the Flag Staff by the Officers' Club and then joined the parade which was gathering at the Main Parade Ground Sheridan Avenue and Montgomery Street. The Main Parade Ground by the 100 Series Buildings has always been a gathering place for some of the greatest parades at the Presidio of San Francisco.
The 91st Division USAR Color Guard, the Lowell High School JROTS cadets, Sons of the American Revolution, Men of the U.S.S. Pinckney and several other group marched to the National Cemetery about a eight of a mile away from the Main Parade Ground.
I met Mayor Gavin Newsom and he was on his way to join the dignitaries at the front. Met several of my good friends along the short march and soon it was time to enter the National Cemetery and for the Ceremony of begin.
There was the Special Salute and Presentation of Colors. The National Anthem was sung and the followed by the Invocation. The Pledge of Allegiance and the Welcoming Address by Steven E. Fezler, NCA.
God Bless America by the SFC Paul Carr from the 91st Division USAR. Mayor Gavin Newsom read the Mayor's Proclamation and then the remarks by the politicians and they were many since this is Election Year. The Pleasanton Community Concert Band performed a Medley of Service of Service Songs which reminded me of the 6th U. S Army Band one of the best in the Nation. There was the Gettysburg Address, Benediction, Amazing Grace, Taps the Rifle Salute, the Flyover followed by the Twenty-one Gun Salute.
Early the flag at the Main Flag Pole was raised to half-staff and now to Full staff. Every one who was present enjoyed this Memorial Day 2006. It was a great sunny day with a light breeze and the coordination of the ceremony was excellent.
Wallace Levin the Ceremony Coordinator did a great job and kudos to the Pleasanton Community Concert Band for doing the honors.
No Nation should go to war putting in danger the lives of our young women and men. In past years I have been reflecting and more when I worked at the Presidio of San Francisco.
I was involved with Desert Storm and Shield and thank God that war ended in a short time. But even that war took a heavy toll on our men and women and some of us still should remember the Gulf Syndrome that adversely impacted so many of our bright young soldiers.
I really do not appreciate when politicians come to steal the lime light on Memorial Day but this year some tried to do that. On this day as with every Memorial Day it is fitting that we appreciate our Freedom which in this Nation many take for granted.
The present White House has made a mockery of our soldiers by sending them out to places like Iraq where they do not belong. History will reveal the truth but in the interim all we can do is pray and support our soldiers. To the many parents, relatives, friends of those that laid their lives in the service of our Nation - we salute them and appreciate their supreme sacrifice. For those friends that could not be there and for those that visit my web site we shall post a few photographs. Kudos to you all who served the Sixth U. S. Army and Presidio of San Francisco. To those that lie at the Presidio National Cemetery including the Buffalo Soldiers we honor and respect your deeds and you all live in our memories.
NPS Ranger and Presidio Trust Graig Middleton.
Thousand Gather on Memorial Day.
The Presidio Main Post.
Flag honor the fallen.
U.S. Park Police.
Memorial Ceremony 2006.
Presidio National Cemetery.
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