MEMORIAL DAY is being observed across the nation this weekend.
This will be a special one in Belmont County. On Friday, May 30, one of its veterans who was awarded the Congressional Medal Honor for Bravery in World War II will be honored. Sgt. Emile DeLeau, Jr., who was born in Lansing and grew up in Blaine, will be honored at 9 a.m when a flag will be hoisted on the flagpole on Will's Hill overlooking the Village of Bridgeport. At 11 a.m. Sgt. DeLeau will be honored by the Veterans of the Vietnam War, post 1, and the Belmont County Veterans Association , when a new grave marker plaque will be dedicated at his grave site in Linwood Cemetery in Blaine. The public is invited to attend the ceremony .
On Sunday, May 25, the Vietnam Veterans will hold ceremonies at the Soldier's Monument in Bridgeport beginning at 10 a.m. A 10:30 a.m. service will be held at the monument in Brookside and a 11 a.m at the memorial on National Road in Lansing.
Let us take just a few minutes of our time to honor our veterans who gave so much to all of us. As Adam Kelly , the country editor wrote in the Wheeling News Register several years ago, "Is it too much to ask to remember them, honor them on this one day, this legion of the forgotten dead who have died for America and thus for you and me?"
America's veterans from all our wars, represent the very best our nation has to offer. Memorials all over our country and especially those in the nation's capital, are a fitting tribute to all those who served and all those who gave their lives in the cause of freedom. America owes them a tremendous debt of gratitude.
I am proud to say that my chest bursts with pride when I recall the exploits of our veterans and what they had to endure.
As we observe this special Memorial Day, let us remember those who fought and died in all our wars, They were robbed of what might have been - what could have been. We will never know if one of them would have been the doctor who found a cure for cancer or for some of the many muscular diseases which afflict our world. Perhaps another would have been a great football, baseball or basketball player or maybe a coach or teacher. Perhaps one of them would have been the President of the United States.
Let us never forget that freedom is not free and as Thomas Jefferson said,"the price of freedom is eternal vigilance."
Let us pray for those who are still fighting in far away lands in the war against terrorism.
Many years ago, Monsignor Joseph P. Kiefer of St. Anthony Church, Bridgeport, wrote a poem and dedicated it to a boy from the parish who was killed in action. It is called "Till Final Reveille."
"Sleep on brave soldier, gently sleep
Immne from war's deep pains.
Secure from wind and winter snows,
Untouched by autumn's rains,
Thou has kept rendezvous with death
On Europe's distant plains.
The crash of bombs, the ack-ack fire
Are silenced evermore.
And though your pals still span the skies,
You do not hear the roar,
Now Angels watch beside your cross
Upon that foreign shore.
Sleep on, brave soldier, gently sleep
Wherever you may be,
With God in Heaven rest in peace till final reveille.
Where we shall see you face once more,
And Live eternally ."
May God bless all our veterans. May He bless our country and keep us always strong and at peace .
THE Historic National Road Yard Sale will be held Thursday, Friday and Saturday, May 29-31 from dawn to dusk 25 miles through Belmont County from Bridgeport to Hendrysburg. For more information, call the Belmont County Tourism Council at (740) 695-4359 or 1-800-345-5082. Yard sale signs are available to registered participants while supplies last.
WE Welcome Nick Paliswat to Belmont County. He is the new administrator at the Belmont Soil and Water Conservation District office in St. Clairsville. He succeeds Katie Marks who has accepted a position with the SWCD office in Washington County. Paliswat is from from Stark County.
FRIENDS of the Barnesville Hutton Memorial Library in Barnesville are holding a used book sale with proceeds being used for programming at the library. The sale will be at the library annex a 611 N. Chestnut St., and will be held Thursday and Friday, May 29-30 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Saturday, May 31, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. On Saturday, all books will be $1 per bag.
The library is accepting slightly used, clean books, puzzles, DVDs CDs and videos for the sale. They can be bought to the annex on Tuesday May 27, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m For information, call the library at (740) 425-1651.
THIS is a reminder that the Sixth Annual Lansing Follies Minstrel Variety show,"Magical Musical Kingdom" will be held Friday and Saturday May 30-31 at the former Lansing Elementary School. The show begins at 7:30 p.m. and many local talents will perform. Tickets are $5 at the door. There will be a 50-50 raffle as well as concessions.
THE Summer Concert Series, sponsored by the St. Clairsville Department of Parks and Recreation are held on Tuesdays, from 7-9 p.m. They began on May 20, and will continue through July 29, with the exception of one special concert which will be held on Wednesday July 2.
The concerts are held at the stage area at the city's Central Park Complex Amphitheater located behind the J.B. Martin Recreation Senior Center, 102 Fair Ave. There is no charge, but donations are accepted. Handicap parking is available. Those attending the concerts are asked to bring chairs or blankets on which to sit. No alcoholic beverages are permitted. Call (740) 695-2037 for information about the concerts.
PAULA HOUSTON, secretary to Judge Frank Fregiato in the Belmont County Common Pleas Court, will retire on May 31. Her final day of work will be May 30. Prior to coming to the Belmont County Courthouse, Paula worked for Judge Jennifer Sargus when she was an attorney in Wheeling. We wish Paula many years of good health and happiness. Paula plans to relocate to Cincinnati .to be near her daughter. A retirement reception will be held in her honor on Friday.
THE Martins Ferry Lions Club will hold a Yard Sale in the Park on Saturday, June 7, from 8 a.m to 4 p.m. You can reserve a 12x12 spot for only $10. Call (740) 633-8928.
THE Village of Brookside will hold its Second Annual Summer Kick-Off, on Saturday May 31, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. A variety of events will take place throughout the community including business sidewalk sales, large rummage and yard sales, music by a DJ, children's games, animal petting zoo, face paintings and a food court with a large seating area and air conditioned.
A large indoor and outdoor craft and vendor sale will be held at St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The church is located next to Wilson's Funeral Home. Free parking is available.