Memorial Day events set in Marysville, Arlington

  • Wednesday, May 22, 2019 10:25am
  • Life

Memorial Day just won’t be the same without Marysville city historian Ken Cage.

For years Cage played a major role in the observance at the Marysville Cemetery, put on by Marysville American Legion Post 178.

Along with being the major reason there is a museum in town, Cage also was the historian and chaplain for the American Legion post.

He died in March at the age of 87.

His widow, Ethel Cage, plans to take part in this year’s ceremony Monday, which starts at 11 a.m. She will be part of the auxiliary group that presents red, blue and white roses as part of the annual event.

One of the speakers, Dan Grumbach, post commander, plans to talk about the American Legion celebrating its 100th anniversary. It had planned an open house a few months ago, but changed plans when Cage died.

Mayor Jon Nehring also will speak.

The Marysville-Pilchuck High School Navy Junior ROTC will present the colors, and everyone will sing “The Star Spangled Banner.”

The American Legion chaplain will give an opening prayer.

As usual, there will be an open house at the post on Cedar Street after the event.

American Legion members plan to put up flags in the cemetery Friday.

Prior to that ceremony, there will be another one starting at 10 a.m.

Gregory Carl Thompson of Marysville was only 19 when he was killed in South Vietnam on July 26, 1970.

He will be honored at the earlier ceremony.

Thompson, who served with A Company of the 589th Engineer Battalion, was killed in Ninh Thuan Province.

Surviving members of the 589th will conduct flower-placing ceremonies to honor each of the 26 individuals who died while serving with the unit in Vietnam. These flower-placing ceremonies have been in the making for nearly 50 years. “It is time we put aside the stigma of having fought in Vietnam to honor those who honored us by making the supreme sacrifice,” said Perry Blanchfield, association chairman. Charles Alexander of Edmonds will lead the Honor Our Fallen ceremony for Thompson. Stanley Bradley is another honor guard volunteer.

Thompson was born Nov. 17, 1950. He has no known living relatives in the area.

His dedication on the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C., says Thompson’s tour started April 18, 1970. He was an SP4 – E4 in the Army. He was the victim of a non-hostile, ground casualty. Meanwhile, in Arlington, American Legion Post 76 will have its annual parade downtown starting at 10 a.m.

The parade features veterans, the Arlington high School Junior ROTC and other organizations.

After the parade, another ceremony takes place at Arlington cemetery, where Legion members also decorate with flags.

On Memorial Day our country remembers those who died while in the military.

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