Memorial Day ceremonies set

Published 8:44 pm Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Three ceremonies are planned for Memorial Day this Saturday and Monday.

Coming up first, the Suffolk Chapter 173 of the United Daughters of the Confederacy will hold its Memorial Day ceremony at 10 a.m. Saturday in Cedar Hill Cemetery on Mahan Street. The Tom Smith Camp of the Sons of Confederate Veterans will participate.

Mike Pullen, a past commander of the Tom Smith Camp and a lieutenant commander of the Army of Northern Virginia, will speak.

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He will make connections between Richmond’s Oakwood Cemetery’s Confederate section, a Virginia Division project of which he is the chairman, and veterans buried at Cedar Hill. He’ll also speak on the time period after the Civil War, he said.

On Monday, the observance at Albert G. Horton Jr. Memorial Veterans Cemetery, 5310 Milners Road, will begin at 10 a.m. It is sponsored by the American Legion Nansemond Post 88.

“Every year it’s a wonderful one,” said Dan Kemano, director of cemeteries for Virginia’s Department of Veterans Services. “It’s going to be a really, really great one. It always is.”

U.S. Army Sgt. Maj. Jim Thomson will be the keynote speaker at the Horton cemetery. He has been in the Army for 28 years and currently serves at the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command’s Institute for Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development. His awards and decorations include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal and Meritorious Service Medal.

Also Monday, beginning at 11 a.m., the American Legion Norman R. Matthews Post 57 will host its annual recognition at Cedar Hill Cemetery.

Col. Stephanie Lewis of the U.S. Army Signal Corps will be the guest speaker. She comes from a military family and is a third-generation colonel, Post Commander Joe Garlitz said. Her father served a number of tours of duty during the Vietnam War.

Garlitz said there will be a special commemoration of the Vietnam War, since this year is the 50th anniversary of its beginning.

“We sponsor the event every year, just out of tradition and to remember our fallen brothers that served,” Garlitz said.