Due to the COVID-19 outbreak here, most American Legion Posts along with municipalities in New York State have made the decision to cancel their long-established Memorial Day parades and ceremonies.
This decision was made in order to protect public health due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
Shelter Island’s Legion Post 281 and Commander Dave Clark will significantly modify the ceremonies this year, but are committed to the following:
• Placing of U.S. Flags on the graves of veterans at all Shelter Island Cemeteries by our local Boys and Girls Scouts with adult supervision. This will be done on Sunday, May 24 (time to be announced) and will be coordinated through the Legion Post. All participants in the flag-laying ceremonies need to be maintaining social distancing and have a face mask with them.
• This year’s ceremony will be videotaped during the week prior to Memorial Day.
• The ceremony will be videotaped on the front lawn of the Legion, in front of the Memorial Stones, and aired on Channel 22 and other town platforms such as Faebook on Monday starting at 10 a.m. and replayed throughout the day at the top of the hour. The ceremony will consist of the following:
• Church bells from all local churches will ring at exactly 10 a.m. along with the Fire Department whistles.
• There will be a moment of silence to honor our fallen heroes from Shelter Island and across the United States. During the moment of silence, there will be photographs displayed from previous Memorial Day parades; of last year’s speaker Howard Jackson; and some of the Islanders killed in action.
• Retired US Army Colonel Jim Colligan will provide brief opening remarks followed by Rev. Charles McCarron and Pastor Robert Griffin offering prayers.
• The Ladies Auxiliary will be shown laying the wreaths at the five large boulders on the front lawn of the school and American Legion Post 281.
• A reading of those Shelter Islanders killed in action by Father Peter DeSanctis.
• Playing of Taps.