For the second year in a row, Memorial Day events in the high desert will be hampered by COVID-19 restrictions which have forced some events to be canceled.
But several organizations across the High Desert and local mountain communities have scheduled holiday celebrations designed to honor the fallen men and women in the US military on Monday.
One of the biggest Memorial Day events will be hosted by the City of Apple Valley, which will honor local and national heroes at a Memorial Day ceremony scheduled from 8 a.m. to noon at the Civic Center Park Amphitheater.
Mayor Curt Emick is expected to speak and will be joined by San Bernardino County 1st District Supervisor Paul Cook and 33rd District MP Thurston “Smitty” Smith.
“It will be a solemn morning memorial, as we honor the men and women who have courageously given their last full measure of devotion to our country and to their neighbors,” Emick said in a statement.
During the in-person ceremony at Civic Center Park, bugle and Apple Valley High School graduate Caleb Thomas Felton will perform “Taps,” which is becoming a must-have song for him.
Last year, Felton shared a video online of him playing Taps at 3pm on Memorial Day as part of the “Taps Across America” event.
In 2019, he performed the song at a 9/11 memorial service at AVHS as part of the Sun Devil Marching Band.
Felton graduated last week alongside nearly 460 AVHS seniors in a ceremony at Newton T. Bass Stadium.
At Monday’s event, city staff will adorn the amphitheater with American flags. Some 300 additional small flags will be available for residents to plant in the park. They can also write special messages on ribbons that will accompany the flags.
Civic Center Park is located at 14999 Dale Evans Parkway, Apple Valley. For more information, contact the city’s special events office at 760-240-7000 ext. 7882.
Traditionally, Sunset Hills Memorial Park and Apple Valley Mortuary have held their Memorial Day ceremony and lunch during the holidays.
A recent Facebook post from Sunset Hills said they didn’t schedule an event because they didn’t know how the COVID-19 pandemic would affect them.
While there is no Memorial Day ceremony at Mountain View Cemetery in Barstow, volunteers will assist American Legion Station # 324 at 8 a.m. Sunday place 1,700 flags on the property at 37067 Irwin Road .
For more information, visit the Friends of Barstow Cemetery Facebook group.
The annual Memorial Day service is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. Monday at Veterans Park, 40870 Big Bear Boulevard, Big Bear.
The ceremony will include performances by retired Air Force Major Nelson Reynolds and unaccompanied minors, which consists of students from Big Bear High School and singing students of teacher Diane Sloan Kubeja.
Visit Big Bear will host a Memorial Day fireworks show, which begins at 9 p.m. The air show is visible from the shore and several high peaks overlooking Big Bear Lake.
Tune in to KBHR 93.3 FM to listen to the musical accompaniment during the fireworks display.
Spring Valley Lake
Spring Valley Lake will host its 7th annual Memorial Day Flag Parade and Moment of Remembrance starting at 2 p.m. Monday. Events are organized only for residents of the private community.
Events are scheduled at the Spring Valley Lake Community Center on Rolling Ridge Drive and will include a parade of bikes, cars and golf carts.
The Moment of Remembrance is scheduled for 3 p.m. at the Country Club Veterans Monument on Spring Valley Parkway.
The annual Memorial Day ceremony at Victor Valley Memorial Park and the Mortuary on Eleventh Street was also not scheduled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
No holiday events were planned for the Desert View Funeral Home and Desert View Memorial Park located on Amargosa Road.
The three communities of Wrightwood, Phelan and Piñon Hills will come together at 11 a.m. Monday for the 13th annual Veterans Day ceremony at the Wrightwood Veterans Memorial.
The event will feature a speech by 8th District Congressman Jay Obernolte, music by Claudia Campbell and a prayer by Pastor Dave Conrad.
Members of the Wrightwood Boy Scouts will also participate. The Veterans Memorial is located at 1274 Evergreen Road, Wrightwood.
Stater Bros. Markets on Memorial Day will remember the dead in 170 stores during a national moment of remembrance.
Monday at 3 p.m., every Stater Bros. store manager ask all customers and employees to take a one minute silence break to honor and remember fallen service members.
Bugles Across America has partnered with Stater Bros. to sound “Taps” after the moment of silence at 12 selected locations in Southern California. No Haut Désert store is listed as a participant.
“Stater Bros. Markets is proud to continue its tradition of honoring and commemorating the courageous men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice in service of our nation,” said the CEO of Stater Bros. Pete Van Helden in a press release.
The National Moment of Remembrance, established by an act of Congress in 2000, designates 3 p.m. on Remembrance Day each year as a time of pause, in an act of national unity, to honor those who have died in the service of their country, the company said. .
It is uncertain whether any of the local VFW stations scheduled any events for Memorial Day, as messages left were not resent.
The honor of fallen servicemen began as Decoration Day after the Civil War, when the families of Union and Confederate forces began to decorate the graves of those who died.
This eventually became known as Memorial Day and was standardized to be celebrated on the last Monday in May by an act of Congress in 1968.
Daily Press reporter Rene Ray De La Cruz can be reached at 760-951-6227 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @DP_ReneDeLaCruz.