Town tradition honors Shelburne Veterans

Community members recognize and thank Shelburne veterans during the annual Memorial Day tribute Monday, May 26 on the Parade in Shelburne.
Community members recognize and thank Shelburne veterans during the annual Memorial Day tribute Monday, May 26 on the Parade in Shelburne.

By Sheri Duff

Not a drop of rain greeted the nearly 200 community members in attendance for the annual Shelburne Memorial Day tribute on Monday morning, May 26. As in past years, the Memorial Day ceremony began with the presentation of the colors by Shelburne Boy Scout Troop #602 and a musical performance by the Shelburne Community School’s Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Tim Buckingham.

The Rev. Sherry Osborn offered the invocation, and Town Moderator Tom Little again served as the event’s Master of Ceremony. This event is organized each year through the efforts of Shelburne resident Carroll “Bud” Ockert, a retired Colonel in the U.S. army, with assistance from the Shelburne Professional and Business Association.

This year’s keynote speaker was Shelburne’s own Arthur Kunin, a doctor and a veteran of World War II. Kunin eloquently shared remembrances of his family before he was drafted, his service during the war, and his eventual safe, although wounded, return. Suffice it to say he captured the attention and imagination of the entire audience.

After Kunin’s address, Shelburne Boy Scout Nick Pomicter shared reflections on the Scouts’ recent trip to Normandy, France, followed by “In Honor of the Fallen” performed by the Wind Ensemble, and the playing of “Taps,” by Richard Hall of the Wind Ensemble.

Once Rev. Sherry Osborn led the benediction, Shelburne veterans in the audience were invited to stand in front of the stage to be recognized and thanked by those in attendance.

After the tribute, wreaths were placed at the town’s three memorial sites by the Boy Scouts: the entrance to the Pierson Building, where the names of those who served in World War I are inscribed; the Town Hall entrance, which is a memorial to World War II veterans; and the Pierson Building flag pole, which commemorates the Shelburne residents service in the Korean and Vietnam wars.

In the future, a Veterans Memorial honoring veterans of all wars will be constructed on the Parade Green. Fundraising of $100,000 is currently ongoing by the Shelburne Veterans Committee and construction is expected to begin spring 2015. For more information about the Veterans Memorial or to donate to the cause please call Mike Lynch at 985-2461.