The observances may not be as elaborate or numerous as in past years due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, but there will still be Memorial Day events in Highland County on Monday, May 25.
Ceremonies will be held in Hillsboro and Pricetown. Village officials said Wednesday they were not sure whether or not Greenfield was having any type of ceremony.
In Hillsboro, a ceremony conducted by Hillsboro VFW Post 9094 will begin at 10:30 a.m. at the Veterans Memorial on the Highland County Courthouse square.
“It won’t be like most years, but at least we’re doing something,” Hillsboro VFW Commander Rick Wilkin said.
He said he would likely have a few words to say about the reasons for observing Memorial Day, the flag will be dropped to half-staff and there will be a rifle salute, the playing of taps, the laying of a wreath in front of the memorial, and a prayer. From there, Wilkin said, the VFW will proceed to St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery and the Hillsboro Cemetery where wreaths will be placed and there will be rifle salutes.
“Anybody that would like to parade or caravan along will be welcome to follow the Highland County Veterans Honor Guard van,” Wilkin said. “We do ask that they follow social distancing guidelines.”
Just prior to Memorial Day each year, new bricks honoring veterans and those currently serving in the military are placed at the memorial. Wilkin said the bricks for this year have been made, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the plant where they were made was shut down for a time and this year’s bricks have not been engraved.
“They’re made, we paid for them, and we’re waiting for them to get here. But they won’t be here for Memorial Day,” Wilkin said.
Hopefully, he said, the new bricks should be in place within the next month or sooner.
Wilkin said orders for the bricks are being accepted for next year. Order forms can be obtained by stopping by the Hillsboro VFW Post at 1000 W. Main St. behind the Dairy Queen or at Rick’s Body Shop in Allensburg.
In Pricetown, event organizer Mark Faust said a parade from the Pricetown Church of Christ to the Pricetown Cemetery will be begin at 10 a.m. He said the program will be presented at the cemetery and that there will not be a dinner at the church like usual.
He said the program is being condensed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the hope is to keep it outside, although it may be moved inside if the weather is bad.
The guest speaker will be Hillsboro Auditor Alex Butler and the honored veteran will be Cliff Ellis. Faust said there will be a couple patriotic songs; children will recite the Gettysburg Address and pledges to the American flag, Christian flag and Bible; and that some of the church ladies will present “honor quilts” to two or three veterans.
An annual Memorial Day observance in South Salem has been canceled.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522.