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Veterans, civilians gather to honor service men, women

American Legion Post 29 and Martinez VFW getting ready for the 21 Gun Salute. (DEBORAH KIMBRELL / Courtesy)
American Legion Post 29 and Martinez VFW getting ready for the 21 Gun Salute. (DEBORAH KIMBRELL / Courtesy)

By INGEMAR OLSSON
Special to the Tribune

MARTINEZ, Calif. – The Veterans Celebrations in Martinez, organized by Martinez Veterans Commission started at Alhambra Cemetery at 10 a.m. on Veterans Day.

This year, Pastor Terry Reilly led the prayer after bagpiper Scott Parker initiated the celebrations.

Flag raising was performed by U.S. Navy Sea Cadets and League of Cadet Corps, Diablo Squadron.

The Pledge of Allegiance was led by Cub and Boy Scouts of America No. 1351.

Shane Bower, Martinez Veterans Commission Chair, introduced and welcomed participants and audience at the cemetery.

The Cubs and Boy Scouts of America No. 1351 placed the wreath and then Pastor Terry Reilly held the Benediction before the ceremony ended with Taps on trumpet by Jennifer Oertel.

At 11 a.m., the celebrations continued at Ignacio Plaza in front of City Hall after the City’s Barbara Patchin had placed a wreath at the memorial, where earlier celebrations were held.

Scott Parker began the ceremony with bagpipes and then Pastor Reilly led the prayer.

U.S. Navy Sea Cadets and League of Cadet Corps Diablo SQDN raised the flag, and the celebration continued with choir song of the National Anthem by Martinez Community Choir under the direction of Gail Haefke.

The Pledge of Allegiance was led by Cub and Boy Scouts of America No. 1351.

Then the Veterans Commission Chair, Shane Bower, introduced the Veterans Commission and guests.

The Welcome Message was given by Mayor Rob Schroder, with messages following by the offices of Congressman Mark DeSaulnier, Congressman Mike Thompson, Supervisor Federal Glover and Senator Lois Wolk, who had all sent representatives to the Martinez Veterans Day ceremonies.

Key note speaker Captain Ingemar Olsson delivers the Veterans Day Message at Ignacio Plaza, Nov. 11, 2016. (DEBORAH KIMBRELL / Courtesy)
Key note speaker Captain Ingemar Olsson delivers the Veterans Day Message at Ignacio Plaza, Nov. 11, 2016. (DEBORAH KIMBRELL / Courtesy)

Key note speaker was Veterans Commissioner Captain Ingemar Olsson, who delivered the Veterans Day Message, and Veterans Commissioner Richard Philbrook then held the Remembrance Speech.

Martinez Community Choir, under direction of Gall Haefke, sang “Let Freedom Ring” before the Cub and Boy Scouts of America No. 1351 placed the Wreath, followed by Benediction of Pastor Reilly.

The celebrations ended with a 21 Gun Salute by American Legion Post 29 and the Martinez Veterans of Foreign Wars, followed by Taps by Jennifer Oertel.

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