Lehighton UVO offers Memorial Day services throughout weekend
Gail Maholick/TIMES NEWS Taking part in the Memorial Day services at the Lehighton Cemetery were, from left, Lehighton Mayor Donald Rehrig, LaRue Fritz, Lehighton American Legion Auxiliary Unit 314 poppy chairman, Madison Brown, Miss Poppy; Major General James Joseph, James Wentz, chaplain; and Harry Wynn III, Memorial Day service director and past VFW Post commander. Wentz was presented a plaque thanking him for his 20 years of dedicated service as a chaplain at Lehighton Memorial Day services.
Lehighton United Veterans Organization capped off a weekend of Memorial Day services with a flag raising service honoring all branches of the military at the Shoemaker-Haydt American Legion Post 314, Lehighton on Memorial Day.
The flag raising cemetery followed the main services at the Lehighton Cemetery, where the main speaker was Maj. Gen. James Joseph, assistant adjutant General, Pennsylvania Army National Guard.
Harry J. Wynn III, past Veterans of Foreign Wars, conducted Monday's flag raising service, main services at the Lehighton cemetery and the services held throughout Lehighton. Additional Monday services were held at Sgt. Stanley Hoffman Boulevard, Catholic Cemetery, Weissport Park and Union Hill Cemetery.
During main service, Wynn welcomed the crowd of people who came to hear the speakers and honor veterans, both alive and deceased and especially those who paid the supreme sacrifice.
UVO Chaplain James Wentz offered the prayers. At the conclusion of the program, Wynn honored Wentz for 20 years of service as chaplain at Memorial Day services with a plaque thanking him for his dedication to the UVO.
Also speaking was Lehighton Mayor Donald Rehrig. Rehrig thanked everyone for taking the time to attend the services and commended the UVO for putting the services together for the community.
"We're here to honor the fallen comrades and their dedication to service," said Rehrig. "They died for our freedom."
Rehrig said that each soldier answered the call willingly.
"Please pray for the safety of our troops as they serve on the front line," added Rehrig. "They have protected our freedoms."
Rehrig then asked for everyone to pause and reflect on those who gave their lives. "They have not been forgotten," he said.
Maj. Gen. James was the said that America is rich with the spirit of sacrifice.
"We are the land of the free and we have the privilege to pursue happiness," said James.
James said that our nation will never overcome the loss of those who died.
James noted that the soldiers today are making sacrifices each day. He noted they sacrifice their health and safety every day.
On Sunday, Richard "Reds' O'Donnell, past Legion chaplain conducted the west rural services at St. John Cemetery, Ben Salem Cemetery, Dinkey Memorial Cemetery and Packerton Cemetery and K.M. "Spike" Long conducted the east rural services at Parryville Cemetery, Long Run Cemetery, Big Creek Cemetery, Franklin Heights Cemetery and St. Matthew Cemetery.