Students attend Antelope Memorial Day ceremony
A memorial celebration at the Antelope Valley Cemetery has become a tradition for students of Coleville High School and Antelope Valley Elementary School. The VFW Post 3567 set aside Tuesday as a day of remembrance and education for the students at the cemetery near Coleville.
“We have had this ceremony since at least 1985,” said Post Adjutant Dieter Hoffmann. “That was when I became a member of the post and we had a little ceremony that year.”
The morning events started with the arrival of the students, their teachers and advisors. A call to order was presented by Post Commander Elmer DeFrese and a post of colors performed by the Color Guard from the Mountain Warfare Training Center. The memorial flag was raised then lowered to half mast by VFW Post 3567 while Rose Murray sang the National Anthem.
Mountain Warfare Training Center base chaplain Jeffery Quinn presented the Invocation followed by commentary by Post Chaplain Charles Evans and the reading by Hoffmann and Post Jr. Vice Mark Spencer of the roll call of veterans interred in the cemetery.
Marines from training center performed a rifle salute to the dead and “Taps” was played by post bugler Jesse Isbell. The colors were retired and the students were then taken on a tour of the cemetery. Other Antelope Valley residents joined in the celebration to honor the dead and read the names of the veterans whose graves were marked with American flags.
Residents, like Frances Rich, were there to honor friends and family members. Rich’s husband, Henry Toews, was a veteran. She also remembered her daughter Julie Marie Toews,13, who was killed when the school bus she was riding in lost control on Cunningham Road, Oct. 8, 1974. Julie was one of 10 students on the bus that day.