The Salem Veterans Association and Member Organizations welcomed everyone to Memorial Day 2009. After a slight delay in starting the parade, the many participants wound their way to the Salem Center Burying Ground and gazebo near the Historical Society building. The opening remarks were made by Douglas Michlon, Veterans Association President. The National Anthem was played, followed by a prayer by VFW Chaplain Hubert O’Hearn. The Salem High School Band played a beautiful Armed Forces medley, and then the powerful POW/MIA ceremony was performed. The introduction of Veterans Organization commanders and presidents were announced. Damon Kenison did the introduction of state, county, and local officials, while Enrico Casaletto did the introduction of Veterans and Patriotic Organizations. Patrick Hargreaves was next with the introduction of Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, and Cub Scouts. Salem High School Chorus was next, with a beautifully done patriotic song that awed the crowd — awarded by the listeners with a “10” and comparing this rendition to the television show You’ve Got Talent. Richard Cooney read the list of names added to the memorial monuments. The town manager was the guest speaker, who told a heart-wrenching story of how it really was in the military.
Ellsworth Brown at the Civil War memorial
Little Patriots - Erin, Lauren and Allison Ross
The first dignitaries
Color Guard for Blue Devils
Civil War costumes
Pledge of Allegiance
The New Hampshire State Elks Association held the annual convention on May 15 through 17 at the Grand Hotel in North Conway. This year they are proud to announce the installation of the 2009-2010 President Joseph Morawski, Past Exalted Ruler, Past District Depute from the Derry Salem Elks Lodge. Joe, a resident of Salem, has been an active member of the Derry Salem Lodge for 21 years and State Association for many years. Joe has been active in the Lodge with the Hoop shoot, Soccer shoot, Teen Award and Scholarship program and the Americanism program, Veterans event and Kidfest to name a few.
Also, this year the Derry Salem Elks Lodge was proud to have one of their members receive a National Award - Volunteer for Veterans Services for 2008-2009 was awarded to Thomas McGibbon for the work he has done for the veterans at the Veterans Administration Medical Center (VAMC) in Manchester and the New Hampshire Veterans Home in Tilton. Tom has been a member of the Derry Salem Elks for 19 years and has dedicated himself to veteran services for 18 of those years. Among the events that Tom has helped get organized are the annual Fishing Derby where the veterans are taken out for a day of fishing and a BBQ, an honorary Dinner for Veterans held at the lodge, seeing that the veterans are at the Thanksgiving Dinner the lodge provides, he has worked on getting special picnic tables to accommodate the wheel chairs for the Manchester VAMC outdoor area, Bingo at the Manchester VAMC, taking the veterans to enjoy getting out to a local sports event, organizing a Secret Santa at Christmas time for the patients at Manchester VAMC and the NH Veterans Home in Tilton. Tom is always looking for more ways to make the veterans at the Manchester VAMC lives more rewarding.
Haigh Elementary School, under the direction of Jeanne Newman, held a patriotic memorial assembly in the cafeteria. The students were very quiet as the assembly began. When the Salem JROTC marched in, the quiet turned to silence. There were veterans sitting in the back, and when they stood to salute, the suspense kept growing for the children. The chorus, all dressed in red, sang many patriotic songs – each one getting better and better as the assembly continued. Each student in the chorus also had a line to recite regarding an aspect of America, and it concluded without a mistake. The JROTC did their flag removal and then walked through the crowd and out the door. The students, with their little flags, quietly lined up and slowly walked outside and down the hill to the gazebo below. It was a somber time, as they marched to the beating of a drum. The students lined up in an orderly row in front of the gazebo, and, one-by-one, they were called upon to place a star on the gazebo in remembrance of a relative. This was done quietly and with purpose. When all 80 children had finished, they proceeded back to Haigh for popsicles. This is an event the students look forward to each year. When they get older, the importance of what they have done will be realized.
Woody and Rich, distinguished guests
Amy Moldoff, music director, and her chorus
The walk to the park
Lowest Gas Prices in Salem
Salem Gas Prices provided by GasBuddy.com