New headstones to honor 11 veterans on Memorial Day |

New headstones to honor 11 veterans on Memorial Day

Town plans event

— People attending the Mem­orial Day observation Monday at Steamboat Springs Cemetery will have a chance, for the first time, to properly pay their respects to 11 veterans buried there who have new headstones.

Organizers have created a Memorial Day program that includes a detailed map of the cemetery plots, guiding visitors to the 11 graves that had been unmarked until recently.

"That's what we hope," Jim Stanko said, "that people will be able to go visit each grave."

The 11 veterans to be honored are: Harvey Adams, Spanish-American War; Byron Baker, John Belton, Joe Lombardi, Louis Long, World War I; Lawrence Belton, Orville Dawson, Edgar Manning, Hugh Young, World War II; Russell Dodd, Cold War; and George Serencko, Vietnam.

The new, flat granite headstones honor veterans going back to the Spanish-American War, who, for a variety of reasons, never had their graves formally marked. They are in place for Memorial Day 2010 because Steamboat seventh-grader Reina Salky took it upon herself to raise the necessary funds. She became interested in the project after her uncle, U.S. Marine Corps Capt. Robert Secher, was killed in combat in Iraq in 2006.

Members of Steamboat Springs Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4264 and American Legion Post 44 will recall the sacrifices made by all local veterans beginning at 11 a.m. Monday.

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Stanko said Memorial Day traditions have been observed in Steamboat since 1920. The ceremony this year will include the changing of the guard on the Veterans Memorial, which symbolizes the dedication of the Legion and VFW to continuing to guard the memories of the veterans buried in the cemetery. Mo Hogue, Paul Draper and the Jewel Singers will offer patriotic songs.

The flag will be lowered to half-staff followed by a 21-gun salute and taps.

Stanko said Reina's family has learned that an article published in the May 9 Steamboat Pilot & Today about Reina's efforts to memorialize the 11 veterans has been picked up by newspapers in San Francisco, Chicago and Washington, D.C.

If you go

■ Memorial Day observances at Steamboat Springs Cemetery

11 a.m. Monday: Those attending are asked to park in the Stock Bridge Transit Center on the west side of Steamboat and ride special Steamboat Springs Transit buses running to the cemetery from 10 to 10:45 a.m. Buses will return immediately after the service. Community service officers will help direct traffic. For more information, call Jim Stanko at 879-3936.

■ Memorial Day in Hayden

6 p.m. today: American Legion Post 89 and Women’s Legion Auxiliary place more than 200 small flags on graves of veterans at Hayden Cemetery.

6 p.m. Monday: Hayden Cemetery

A 15-minute program includes a poem and reading of a tribute, followed by a 21-gun salute and taps.

6:30 p.m. Monday: The public is invited to join in a potluck and burger fry at the American Legion Post on Third Street.

■ Memorial Day in Yampa

11 a.m. Monday at Yampa Cemetery

American Legion Post 189 will lead a prayer and read the names of veterans buried there. Veterans will fire a salute to the dead, and taps will be played.

■ Memorial Day in Oak Creek

Call Mary Deppe at 736-2331 or 736-0600.

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