Changes made to Veterans Day events

Greg Mast

The coronavirus has another victim -- the Ottawa Veterans Day committee has canceled the annual Veterans Day Parade.

“Due to social distancing and some who are concerned for their health, our committee agreed along with me to cancel the parade event and reenactments,” said Sherry Wright, committee chair.

Wright said she will have a short ceremony to honor the veterans at 11 a.m. Nov. 7 at the Franklin County Memorial Wall, Fourth and Main St., Ottawa.

“We will lay the wreath and have a dedication as well as prayer for our veterans and our country,” Wright said.

City Park, Fifth and Main St., Ottawa, will have special displays honoring veterans from all wars, Wright said. The park’s displays will be in place from Nov. 1 through Nov. 11. The Boy Scouts will have a flag retirement ceremony on Nov. 11.

There will be replicas of the Vietnam Veterans War Memorial,  WWII and World War 1 specialty displays such as, Flanders Field's Poppy Field, and there will be crosses sit out for each of the Franklin County men who lost their lives during war time, Wright said.

“There will be many other displays honoring our heroes,” she said. “This is an awesome dedication to our veterans.”

Wright said not having the regular Veterans Day weekend ceremonies should not put a damper on this year’s remembrance.

“Though it was with a heavy heart making this decision, we are doing our very best to keep our dedication to this event going,” Wright said. “For 28 years we have stood firm thru below zero snow, rain and sleet and we will stand up and be counted for now too. Never forget the price our veterans and our country had to endure to keep the freedom we have.

“So remember what our forefathers stood for and fought for. Come and join us in support of our veterans. Let them know no matter what comes or goes, our community, will do all we can to show our respect, love and appreciation to all military men and women.”