Why Memorial Day Is So Important To Me

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The writer has marched in the Manhasset Memorial Day parade most of his life. (Courtesy of Brian Kenny)

I remember my parents telling me the story of buying gas at Charlie Galvin’s gas station on the corner of Shelter Rock Road and Northern Boulevard when it was a two lane country road. Charlie came running out of his office yelling “They just bombed Pearl Harbor!”

I remember covering all the windows with black cloth at 4:30 p.m. every day so enemy bombers could not see the lights on the ground.

I remember my father walking from the railroad station to our home at 128 Chase Rd.. Then changing his clothes before it got dark and go to Sylvester Gardener’s farm at the end of Chase Road to work in the victory garden for the war effort to save food for the soldiers in the war.

I remember Mrs. Beckman crying when I asked her what the Gold Star flag in her window was. She was crying when she told me her son Harry was killed on D-Day and she would never see him again.

I remember Sister Rosa asking the children in class to say a prayer for Robert Munday, who was just killed in the Korean War.

I remember Mrs. Boardman asking us to be pallbearers at Davis Boardman’s funeral after he was killed in the Vietnam War.

I remember holding the rope to keep the flag arch straight while James Regan’s funeral procession went down Plandome Road.

I never had the honor of serving in the armed services, so I found it a privilege to attend the Memorial Day Parade, first as a young child with my parents and then riding my bicycle decorated in Red, White and Blue alongside the parade.

I was a proud member of Boy Scout Troop 71 and participated in the parade with my fellow scouts. The last 60 years I have marched with the Manhasset Lakeville Fire Department.

Traditionally, the event takes one hour; that is the least I can give to honor the 82 fallen heroes from Manhasset that gave their lives for our freedom.

Thank you and God bless Manhasset and God Bless America.

—Brian Kenny

The Manhasset Lakeville Fire Department is a sponsor of the parade.

About The Parade

Manhasset will host a Memorial Day Parade on Monday, May 30 at 10 a.m. The parade will step off at the intersection of Plandome Road and Plandome Road Court South.

Sponsored by the American Legion Post 304, the Manhasset-Lakeville Fire/Water District Commissioners and officers of the Manhasset-Lakeville Fire Department.

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