Two guest speakers will help the Akron-Newstead community honor its fallen military heroes in a series of events and activities this weekend.
Master Sgt. Michael Owczarczak from the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station will be the featured speaker at Monday’s ceremony in Russell Park.
David Freeman will share snippets of his deep interest in military history at a special veterans service Sunday morning at Calvary Baptist Church.
Owczarczak is Unit Training manager of the 107th Security Forces Squadron. Since joining the Army National Guard as a combat medic in 1998, he has supported operations in assignments at bases in the U.S. and Middle East. Owczarczak provided security protection at for aircraft and personnel at Niagara Falls, Andrews Air Force Base, Thumrait Air Base, Charleston Air Base and MacDill Air Force base during operations Nobel Eagle and Enduring Freedom. He is a Bronze Star recipient.
Owczarczak will speak as part of the observance at the GAR monument in Russell Park on Main Street.
Freeman, an Akron resident, will talk about the importance of Memorial Day by recalling the sacrifices of heroes who gave their lives on battlefields at Gettysburg, France and Vietnam. Veterans from wars dating to the American Revolution are buried in area cemeteries.
Freeman’s presentation is part of patriotic service at Calvary Baptist Church coordinated by Newstead Memorial Post 3180 Commander Frank Falkowski. An honor guard and patriotic music will be presented. The service is open to the community. The service begins at 10 AM.
Memorial Day events are sponsored by American Legion L.L. Tillman Post 900 and the Newstead VFW post.
Here is what’s happening this weekend:
Saturday – Gravesite flag placement
8:30 AM: Continental breakfast, VFW Post 3180, 35 Lewis Road
9 AM: Volunteers pick up flags and cemetery assignments at VFW
9:30-11 AM: Flag placements at area cemeteries.
Sunday – Patriotic Veterans Service
10 AM: Calvary Baptist Church, 12752 Lewis Road.
Monday – Memorial Day
7 AM: Wreath placement and flag raising at Evergreen Lawn Cemetery, Bloomingdale Road.
7:20 AM: Wreath placement and flag raising, L.L. Tillman Post, 9 Eckerson Ave.
7:40 AM: Wreath placement and flag raising, Pioneer Cemetery, Hunts Corners Road
8 AM: Wreath placement and flag raising VFW post.
9 AM: Parade begins on Main Street, followed by ceremonies in Russell Park and behind the Akron fire hall.