The Town of Bethany Beach, with the help of the officers and members of VFW Post 7234 in Ocean View, will host a Memorial Day service on Monday, May 27, at noon at the boardwalk bandstand.
VFW Post 7234 Jr. Vice Commander Fulton Loppatto, a Vietnam War veteran, explained that this is the first time they have been in Bethany Beach for such an event, although officers hold a service at the post for Memorial Day and often at area funerals. He said it is a day to get together to “honor our fallen comrades.”
“It’s one of the most solemn, sacred days for the VFW,” he said of Memorial Day, “and we are more than honored to come and do that at Bethany Beach.”
“Part of our mission statement is ‘to perpetuate the memory and history of our dead,’” explained Loppato, adding that all of the officers of VFW Post 7234 will be present at the service.
“We are honored to be invited by the Town of Bethany Beach to perform this solemn remembrance service for all of our comrades who have given their lives in service to this nation to safeguard America’s freedoms,” he said. “We also remember and pray for our comrades that are POWs and MIAs.”
The day will start with a welcome by Bethany Beach Mayor Tony McClenney, followed by the presentation of colors by the VFW 7234 Honor Guard. Local singer and artist Jennifer Carter will sing the national anthem, as well as some other song selections during the service.
The invocation will be by Danny Steele, the chaplain for Post 7234.
Also during the service, “The Soldier’s Poem” will read by a member of the Ladies Auxiliary, and the ceremony will include the red flower, white flower, blue flower and evergreen wreath symbolic tributes.
The guest speaker will be John Mitchell, senior vice-commander of Post 7234 and junior vice-commander for the VFW of Delaware.
The service will close with the volley by the Honor Guard of VFW Post 7234, the playing of “Taps” by a bugler from VFW Post 7234 and Carter’s rendition of “God Bless America,” with which the audience can sing along.