On May 26, Roswell Remembers will once again accord the day the solemnity and respect it deserves with a special 90-minute program at the Faces of War Memorial site behind Roswell City Hall. And if past attendance is any indicator, up to 7,000 people could be in attendance.
Roswell Mayor Jere Wood called the annual ceremony “inspirational, touching and meaningful” and added that it was something in which everyone involved can take pride.
“I believe there is no better way to spend Memorial Day,” Wood said at last week’s city council meeting. “It really makes it a special day, not just another holiday.”
A day to remember all who have died in the service of their country, the Roswell event began in 1997 and today is Georgia’s largest.
All age groups, individuals and families are welcome.
“We want to invite everyone to attend and shake the hand of a veteran to thank them for the sacrifices they and their families made to ensure our freedoms we enjoy today,” said Roswell Remembers chair Dave Young.
“We especially would love to see the younger generation attend to get a deeper appreciation of what it took and still takes today for them to enjoy such freedoms.”
The grounds open at 10 a.m. with military displays and exhibits. At 10:30 a.m., the Atlanta Wind Symphony performs patriotic music.
The official start of the program is at 11 a.m. with presentation of colors, the Pledge of Allegiance, National Anthem and invocation. The Chattahoochee Celtic Pipes and Drums will be participating.
The day’s emcee, Moby, will introduce presenters, including this year’s special guest speaker Jonna Doolittle Hoppes, founder and executive director of The Doolittle Foundation, an organization dedicated to making U.S. military history available to students.
She is the author of “Calculated Risk: The Extraordinary Life of Jimmy Doolittle,” a memoir of her famous grandfather, aviator Jimmy Doolittle, and his equally extraordinary wife, Joe.
Her second book, “Just Doing My Job,” is a collection of biographical stories from World War II.
Hoppes is on the executive board of the Air Force Historical Foundation, on the board for the Warhawk Air Museum in Nampa, Idaho, and an advisor to the Jimmy Doolittle Air and Space Museum at Travis Air Force Base.
The ceremony closes with a 21-gun salute and a bugler playing “Taps.”
Afterward, barbecue will be available for purchase while live music is provided by Nation & Blackwell Bluegrass Band.
Because of large crowds and the sudden noise from the 21-gun salute, this event is not suitable for pets.
Roswell Remembers Memorial Day is presented by Roswell Rotary Club and the city of Roswell. Roswell City Hall is at 38 Hill St.
For more information, go to www.roswellmemorialday.com or call (770) 640-3253.