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Memorial Day Service Offered In Riverbank
Memorial pix
Pictured is the monument that stands in front of the Veterans Memorial Wall at the Riverbank Community Center honoring Navy Corpsman HM2 James Ray Layton, who was killed in Afghanistan in 2009.

The City of Riverbank has scheduled a ‘Memorial Day Salute to Our Heroes’ for Monday, Memorial Day.

The event is scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m. on Monday, May 28. It will be held at the Veterans Memorial Wall, which is in front of the Riverbank Community Center, 3600 Santa Fe, across from Cardozo Middle School.

It is set to commemorate and remember “those who have given the ultimate sacrifice for their country,” according to a city release, and “to pay tribute to those living who have served and to honor those still serving to protect our nation and our freedom.”

Traditionally, however, Memorial Day, established following the Civil War, recognizes those who gave their lives serving in the American armed forces while protecting our country. It is Veterans Day, celebrated on Nov. 11 each year, that was established to honor those who have served in the nation’s military and Armed Forces Day, just celebrated this past Saturday, that recognizes those still serving.

Monday’s program will include words shared by elected officials, prayer, presentation of the colors by Riverbank High School’s Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps, patriotic music and light refreshments.

The event will conclude with the flag at the Community Center being raised from half -staff to full staff, around noon.

Memorial Day was first celebrated on May 30, 1868, and was originally known as Decoration Day because of the early tradition of decorating graves with flowers, wreathes and flags. In 1968, Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act which designated the last Monday in May, as we now celebrate it, rather than the last day in May. It was done to create a three-day weekend for federal employees.