New memorial tree ready for dedication during Decatur Veterans Day celebration
DECATUR — Three years ago, the Decatur Veterans Committee started a tradition of remembrance during its annual Decatur Veterans Day parade through downtown Decatur and commemoration ceremony at Veterans Park.
This year’s ceremony at Veterans Park will be unique in that a tree planted near the Howard Parrish memorial and a new monument commemorating the 100th anniversary of Veterans Day (formerly Armistice Day) will be dedicated.
The tree, an 11-foot Green Giant evergreen, arrived at Veterans Park shortly after noon on Oct. 26 and was planted in its new home by city workers Troy Wackes, Adam Cramer, Joey Gunter and Ricky Burke.
The Veterans parade is scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. (lineup at 2:30 p.m.) from the car wash parking lot on the corner of Third and Main Street in Decatur Nov. 3. It will make its way through the downtown area on its way to its final destination at Veterans Park.
After the parade, there will be a Veterans Day commemoration ceremony and tree dedication at Veterans Park, beginning at 3:30 p.m. Guest speaker for this event will be Congressman Steve Womack. Mayor Bob Tharp will give his annual Veterans Day greeting, followed by the history of the holiday by Mike Eckels, Decatur Historical Commission chairman.
Musical entertainment will be provided by the Decatur High School band, Northside Elementary music class and the bluegrass group “Faith and Freedom.”
American Legion Post 29 Honor Guard will post the colors before the ceremony begins.
For more information, contact the Decatur city clerk’s office at 479-752-3912.
The Veterans Memorial tree is lowered into its new home at Veterans Park by Troy Wackes (left) and Adam Cramer Oct. 26. The tree is part of a memorial commemorating the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I on Nov. 11, 1918.