FAIRBORN — At the 11 hour on the 11 day of the 11 month, Americans honor those who answered the call of duty — the City of Fairborn is no exception.
The community traditionally celebrates Veterans Day with a presentation hosted by the American Legion Dignam-Whitmore Post 526 at the military memorial at the Main Street and Central Avenue intersection. This year, however, the weather for Saturday, Nov. 11 is forecasted to dip into low temperatures. Therefore, the ceremony will be moved to Fairborn United Methodist Church, 100 N. Broad St., in the activities hall in the rear of the building.
The ceremony will still include its customary items, such a participation the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base Honor Guard, the Fairborn Civic Band and Air Force Junior ROTC from Fairborn High School. The flags will still be placed, Taps will also be played, a firing squad will sound off and the wreath will still be laid. Appearances by state and local officials are expected as well. Meaningful words will also be delivered by Colonel Timothy Cook, commander of the 88th Inpatient Operations Squadron at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base Medical Center.
“Veterans Day is not a day of sadness,” Past American Legion Post 526 Commander Chuck Knaub said. “It is a day of thankfulness for veterans of our country who served when asked.”
Instead of placing the flags in the veterans memorial at Main Street and Central Avenue, members of the FHS JROTC will place service flags in front of attendees within regular flag holders. The wreath will symbolically be laid during the ceremony, but will later be placed at the veterans memorial on Main Street.
Knaub said attendees were once rained out during a previous Memorial Day ceremony, but had been lucky with good weather for Veterans Day. He added that hosting the ceremony indoors this year will make it easier for both attendees and participants, saying the Fairborn United Methodist Church was “happy to accommodate.”
“Veterans Day is a day where we honor and thank all veterans for their service to our country,” American Legion Post 526 Spence Chaney said. “We hope all veterans and citizens will attend this ceremony.”
The ceremony is expected to last between 45 minutes to one hour, according to Knaub. It will begin at 11 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 11, with the traditional open house taking place at the new American Legion Dignam-Whitmore Post 526 home, 300 W. Main St., following the ceremony.
Light refreshments will be available at the new American Legion facility. Knaub is hopeful that the new location will spark curiosity from attendees, drawing them to participate in the open house. Post 526 hosted its first meeting in the new facility in recent months, but in the meantime held gatherings with the help of Amvets Post 444.
Since the new facility opened, meeting attendance has been up and private donations have been allowing Post 526 to “hold their head above water,” Knaub said.
Local American Legion officials were able to construct an archway leading into the meeting area and are planning to decorate the space with photos of military family members. The meeting space is doubling as a veterans resource center, where it is envisioned to include computers and other items to help veterans. Knaub said Post 526 is currently working with corporate sponsors to establish the computers and is attending a hearing Wednesday, Dec. 13 to obtain its liquor license.
Contact Whitney Vickers at 937-502-4532. Story courtesy of the American Legion Dignam-Whitmore Post 526.