Shelburne’s annual Memorial Day observance will be held on Monday, May 25 at 11am on the Parade Green, the village green on Church Street, and will feature keynote speaker Major General Steven A. Cray, Adjutant General of the State of Vermont. General Cray is responsible for the training and equipage of nearly 4,000 members of the Vermont Army and Air National Guard, and serves as inspector and quartermaster general and head of the State Military Department, including Veterans Affairs.
Vermont’s 23rd Adjutant General, Major General Cray began his military career in the Vermont Air National Guard while at the University of Vermont. He attended the Academy of Military Science and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in 1984. General Cray has held a variety of command, supervisory, and staff positions at the 158th Fighter Wing and Vermont Joint Forces Headquarters.
As is the custom, Shelburne Boy Scout Troop 602 will present the colors and this year’s invocation and benediction will be delivered by Rev. Mary Abele from All Souls Interfaith Gathering. The Shelburne Community School’s Wind Ensemble, directed by Tim Buckingham, will provide the ceremony’s musical accompaniment.
In keeping with past years’ established traditions, veterans and members of the audience currently serving in the military will be invited to come forward at the end of the ceremony to receive the recognition and thanks of their families, friends, and neighbors. The Memorial Day Observation is sponsored by the Shelburne Business and Professional Association and is organized by Bud Ockert. Town Moderator Tom Little will be the master of ceremonies for the event.
In case of inclement weather, the ceremony will be moved to the Shelburne United Methodist Church across the street from the Parade Green.
The tradition of Memorial Day began shortly after the Civil War when General John Logan, the Commander of the Great Army of the Republic, declared that May 30 was a day to remember the fallen soldiers on both sides.