Rocky Fork Enterprise

Memorial Day

Committees highlight holiday as 'A Day to Remember'


Gahanna residents are invited to attend a traditional ceremony offered by the Memorial Day committee beginning at 1 p.m. Monday, May 27, at Gahanna Veterans Memorial Park, 75 W. Johnstown Road.

Becky Kneeland, Memorial Day committee president, said the day marks a very special one for the community.

"It is one day set aside to remember our veterans and their sacrifices," she said. "It's a day for honoring and a day for saying thank you. The Gahanna Veterans Memorial will stand for years to come as a daily tribute to all of them."

To honor those who have served, bricks may be purchased and dedicated on either Memorial Day or Veterans Day.

Bricks were purchased to honor the following this Memorial Day: Roger G. Andrews, Jesse Balthaser, Adam Bardelang Jr., John E. Bardelang, Ryan Bjorklund, Richard N. Bruce, A.T. Cassady, Kevin Davis, Leroy C. Davis, Donna L. Fisher, James M. Fodor, Sean Hinton, Donald D. Lewis, Walter McCune Jr., Matthew McGregor, Luther H. Meuser, David L. Oty, Louis M. Oty, Gordon R. Poteet, Francisco Rivera, Jim M. Robertson, Richard Shearer, Karl Vanderhorst, Wayne R. Winters and Lewis Woodruff.

Bob Fickle, Memorial Day committee member, said the committee still is collecting stories to go along with the bricks for publication in a book.

Story applications are available at the same places as the brick applications, including Gahanna City Hall.

The theme of this year's program is "Memorial Day: A Day to Remember."

The master of ceremony is Command Sgt. Maj. Errol J. White, of the 645th Regional Support Group, Southfield Mich.

A presentation of colors will be conducted by VFW Post 4719/American Legion Post 797, as will a 21-gun salute.

The national anthem will be presented by Rob McNeal, of the city of Columbus Zoning Department.

An invocation and benediction will be offered by Rabbi Howard Apothaker.

Guests will observe a moment of silence for the dedication of the 26 new bricks.

A wreath will be placed by Chief Warrant Officer 3 Matt McGregor, a helicopter pilot with the Ohio Army National Guard who also is an English teacher at Gahanna Lincoln High School.

The main address will be given by Command Sgt. Maj. Steven Shepherd of the Army National Guard, 16th Engineer Brigade.

Shepherd, a Gahanna resident, has served since 1986. His previously held military occupational specialties included field artillery cannon crew member, cavalry scout, armor senior sergeant and command sergeant major.

His U.S. Army certificates include Operation Iraqi Freedom, Cold War Certificate, Order of Saint George and Order of the Spur.

In his civilian life, Shepherd and his wife opened the first Smoothie King franchise in central Ohio.

The service also will feature taps, by Kyle Granville, as well as bugler Tristan Conover.

"Amazing Grace" will be performed by Gahanna student Nicholas Bosca.