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Lehighton United Veterans Organization plans weekend Memorial Day services

Published May 27. 2010 05:00PM

United Veterans Organization of Lehighton will hold its main 2010 Memorial Day Services at 11 a.m. Monday, May 31, at the Lehighton Cemetery. The main speaker will be Judge Steve Serfass, who began serving in the Court of Common Pleas at the county's 18th judge when he was sworn into office on Jan. 4.

A lifelong resident of Carbon County, Judge Serfass was raised in Parryville and currently resides in Palmerton. He graduated from Lehighton Area High School and continued his education at Dickinson College, Carlisle, where he went on to earn his bachelor of arts degree in political science and history, cum laude.

He went on to earn his juris doctor's degree at Temple University School of Law in Philadelphia and began practicing law in Palmerton, where he maintains a general law practice in the areas of civil litigation, wills and estate planning, real estate transactions, municipal law, business and corporate law.

Judge Serfass and his wife, Jenny reside in Palmerton with the children, Benjamin and Hannah.

The invocation and benediction will be given by UVO Chaplain James H. Wentz. Harry J. Wynn III, American Legion Past Post Commander, will be in charge of the service. Greetings will be given by Mayor Donald Rehrig.

Before the main services, there will be services in Lehighton and Weissport, where veteran's groups will be divided into two sections, with services at the Catholic Cemetery, Lehighton; and at Union Hill and Weissport being held simultaneously.

Services will be conducted at the Sgt. Stanley Hoffman Boulevard Monument at 8:45 a.m. A rifle salute will be held at the Col. Weiss Monument at 8:55 a.m. at Gnaden Huetten Hospital at 9:05 a.m. and at the Fireman's Monument at 9:15 a.m.

The Lehighton Division then forms at the Lehighton Annex on North Third Street. Veterans of this division and the Lehighton Band, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Brownies and Cub Scouts will meet there at 9:15 a.m.

The Lehighton Division will then proceed to the Catholic Cemetery for services at 9:45 a.m. where the Rev. Michael E. Ahrenfield, M.Div., pastor of Ss. Peter and Paul Church, Lehighton, will give the invocation and benediction. Harry J. Wynn III, American Legion Post Past Commander, will be in charge of the service. Lauren Lesko, student at Ss. Peter and Paul School, will read an essay. Speaker will be Jay M. Barry, Air Force Academy graduate and retired General USAF.

Following the service, the Lehighton Division will proceed to Mahoning Street via Third Street.

The Weissport Division, with the Lehighton Band, will form on Franklin Street at the Weissport park at 9:30 a.m. They will salute the World War I and Ben Franklin monuments in the park and then proceed to the Union Hill Cemetery for services there. Arthur W. Dietz, American Legion Post Past Commander, will be in charge of the service. The speaker will be Wallace Putkowski Jr., U.S. Military Academy Academy graduate and local businessman. The invocation and benediction will be given by UVO Chaplain William H. Gross. Each division will be headed by a UVO color guard band, PANG firing squad, Veterans and Boy and Girl scouts.

En route to Third Street, a wreath will be tossed off the Weissport Bridge to honor the dead at sea.

Both divisions will unite at Third and Mahoning streets and proceed to the Lehighton Cemetery, were the final 2010 Memorial Day services will be held at 11 a.m.

Rural services are also held on Sunday by the West and East Groups.

The West Group is directed by Harry J. Wynn, VFW, Post Commander.

The West Group will hold services at 9 a.m. at St. John's Cemetery, Mahoning Township; 10 a.m., Ben Salem Cemetery, East Penn Township; 11 a.m. at Dinkey Memorial Cemetery, Ashfield; and at noon, Packerton Cemetery.

The East Group will be led by Arthur W. Dietz., American Legion Post Past Commander.

The East Group will hold services at 9 a.m. Parryville Cemetery; 9:45 a.m. Long Run Cemetery, Franklin Township; 10:15 a.m., Big Creek Cemetery, Franklin Township; 11 a.m. Franklin Heights Cemetery, Franklin Township; and noon, North Weissport Cemetery.

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