Someone on our Facebook page asked for information about Veterans Day commemorations this year. Owensboro Living got the inside info from organizer Cathy Mullins about the Kentucky Remembers 5K, Veterans Day Parade and 50th Anniversary of Vietnam service, which are taking place the weekend of November 7 and 8. Here is more information about all three events:
Saturday, November 7th – Kentucky Remembers Veterans Day 5K – Honoring our Military and First Responders
The Kentucky Chapter of the American Gold Star Mothers, in partnership with the Kentucky Chapter of Honor and Remember, will be presenting the second annual Kentucky Remembers Veterans Day 5K Run/Walk on Saturday, November 7th at 8:00 a.m. at Smothers Park.
This race is to honor and remember the sacrifice of thousands of American soldiers who have paid the ultimate price for our freedom. Kentucky alone has lost 113 heroes. In addition to our military, the race will honor the sacrifice of our local and state law enforcement and first responders. A moment of silence will be observed for the three Kentucky State Troopers killed in the last year alone.
The race will feature memorial American flags to be carried along the race route beginning at the Shelton Memorial at Smothers Park. Several corporate sponsors have lent support to the project, including Independence Bank, Owensboro Health, and the City of Owensboro. Organizers are seeking additional sponsors including businesses, organizations and private donors to each give $113 in memory of Kentucky fallen soldiers.
Proceeds from the race will benefit four local and state veterans support organizations: the Bluegrass Chapter of the Honor Flight, which provides all expenses paid trips to visit the memorials in Washington, DC for WWII, Korean, and Vietnam veterans; the Honor and Remember organization, which provides personalized flags to families of the fallen; the Warrior 180 Project, with local Chaplain and Pastor, Jeff Hastings, which provides resources for soldiers suffering from PTSD; and the Fisher House, located at Fort Campbell, Kentucky.
Saturday, November 7th – Veterans Day Parade
According to the City’s website, Owensboro has the longest Veterans Day Parade in the country. It has been held every year since 1918, with the exception of 1984.
All service organizations will be represented in the parade, including soldiers from Fort Campbell. Three high school bands will be performing as well.
The route will follow Veterans Boulevard. Organizers are asking people to line the route with flags. While honoring all veterans, this year’s parade will focus on Vietnam era veterans.
Parade begins at 2pm.
Sunday, November 8th – 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration Service
The Kentucky Chapter of the American Gold Star Mothers, along with members of the Owensboro community, will be hosting a 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration Service on Sunday, November 8th at 3:30 p.m. at Good Shepherd Church, 3031 Bittel Road. Everyone is welcome and invited to attend.
All Vietnam era veterans years 1961 to 1975 from Daviess and surrounding counties will be honored during the program. The Daviess County Public Library is collecting names and photographs of all eligible Vietnam era veterans. All Vietnam era veterans or their relatives are asked to call or stop by the library to complete an information form and to bring a military service photograph to be displayed at the library and other places of honor.
Organizers wish to make a strong appeal to all Vietnam era veterans, both stateside and overseas. By nature of service, even those who did not travel overseas were on call to go and are honored for their service and sacrifice. Also offered is a special Welcome Home message to all those who did travel overseas only to return without the honor they deserved at that tumultuous time in our nation’s history.
The program includes several guests and speakers, including Vietnam era veteran and local Sheriff Keith Cain, along with Gold Star Daughter, Cindy Stonebraker, who is the Kentucky State Coordinator for the National League of POW/MIA Families. Her father, Air Force Captain Kenneth Stonebraker, is a Vietnam MIA veteran and was recently honored with a memorial marker at Arlington National Cemetery. After 46 years, Captain Stonebraker’s case remains active and Cindy will be traveling with the POW/MIA Board to Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia next year to meet with officials about her father’s case – and the over 1,600 cases still open from the Vietnam War. In addition, soldiers from both Fort Campbell and Fort Knox will be in attendance.
The Owensboro Community Band will be performing and the local General Evan Shelby Chapter of the NSDAR (National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution) will provide a cookie reception immediately following the program.
To forward names and photographs, please contact the Daviess County Public Library, (270) 684-0211, 2020 Frederica Street, Owensboro, Kentucky.
For more information about the 5K or the 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration Service, please contact Cathy Mullins, (270) 316-9203 or [email protected].