By Sue Moore
Memorial Day, observed Monday, May 27, is a time to remember those who fought and died for our nation with ceremonies and a parade. Vicksburg kicks off its parade at 10 a.m., Schoolcraft at 10:30 and Fulton at 12:30 p.m.
The Vicksburg high school band will lead the parade with the Boy Scouts, the high school equestrian team, fire trucks and children decorating their bikes in red, white and blue. Each observance will have a featured speaker. In Vicksburg it will be Jim Hamrick, the quartermaster from the of the Charles Osborne 5189 Veterans of Foreign Wars post. Anyone who would like to join the parade should meet at Vicksburg Middle School at 9:45 a.m.
Fulton’s parade draws the largest crowd with fire trucks from many departments and lots of kids participating. The American Legion Wally Coon Post 475 will lead the Schoolcraft parade and ceremony.
Another group, the Blue Star Mothers of America, has a mission to remember today’s servicemen and women. It has a chapter in Kalamazoo that includes mothers from all over southwest Michigan. Its purpose is to send care packages as often as possible to the troops, Trudy Johnson told the Vicksburg Rotary Club in April. “We want to be a support group for those in the service of our country.”
“Our biggest joy is getting told by a soldier that he or she appreciated our specialty packages. It came at a good time,” they will tell Johnson. They love to receive gum, beef jerky, tuna packets, diaper wipes, Oreo cookies and homemade pillow cases, she said. This is the group’s major project. It depends entirely on donations for food and mailing costs.
“As mothers of service people, we want to give back to our community and support each other, perhaps with a listening ear and a shoulder to lean on. You have a different feeling if your child is putting him or herself out there,” Johnson said.
“It’s a little bit of love coming from home but it helps us to be notified of who needs help,” Johnson said. The Blue Star Mothers is a nationwide organization and has chapters such as the one in Kalamazoo. Johnson is from Paw Paw and hopes to recruit other mothers from the Vicksburg and Schoolcraft area. She may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 269-343-4540.