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To the Editor: Final respects to a veteran

May 26, 2010

It has come to my attention that we Americans seem to not know how to pay final respects to a veteran. As we enter the month of May, many of us will remember Memorial Day as just a holiday, picnics, day off work, longer weekend, etc. But do many of us take the time to remember just how this came to be? Did you know that many veterans and their families have no idea of what they should and could get for their final wishes? First, the family will choose a funeral home of their choice. Second, the funeral home will help the family fill out the proper paperwork to send to the Veterans Administration for a bronze headstone. Next, the funeral home will make available a flag to cover the coffin. If the family so desires, the funeral home will call the VFW in Loves Park, or the American Legion or Rockford VietNow, to have a funeral honor guard. This can include full honors at the visitation, to flag folding and 21-gun salute at the cemetery. As more of WW II veterans and Korean War veterans, and even now, Vietnam veterans, are dying, those of us that belong to any of the groups are finding our ranks thinning as our age group is not being replaced by younger veterans. So please do tell veterans to help us out, and to help pay final respects to the veteran who has served and died for their country. It’s the least we can do. And to all men and women who have served our country, won’t you please join one of our groups so that you can help pay your respects to the veteran? Thank you.

Steve Tolodxi, Secretary

Rockford VietNow

Chaplain of the American Legion Post 1207

Honor Guard to VFW Post Loves Park

From the May 26-June 1, 2010 issue

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