FAIRFIELD, Conn. -- Fairfield officials, firefighters and police were all on hand Tuesday, Nov. 11, to celebrate the men and women who have served in the armed forces in a ceremony held at the Wall of Honor war memorial on Old Post Road.
“Veterans Day is a celebration of those who came home from war, Memorial Day is a day for those who did not,” veteran Tom Flynn said during the ceremony. “We payed the price, willingly, and would do it again. Please do not forget.”
The ceremony was capped off as U.S. Rep. Jim Himes (D-4th District) presented World War II veteran Milton Michaud with service medals he had earned during service but never received. It also featured speeches from town officials and war veterans.
“It’s great to see so many kids off from school so they can properly recognize the day,” State Sen. John McKinney told a crowd of about 50 residents who came out to the memorial. “In my inability to come up with a better word than thank you, we want to remember to not just say thank you today, but everyday.”
McKinney’s words were echoed by all who spoke on Tuesday, including First Selectman Michael Tetreau, veteran and Master of Ceremonies Joseph Bender and Probate Judge Dan Caruso.
The ceremony also included readings of poems, the singing of the national anthem, a gun salute by three veterans and the playing of taps on a traditional bugle.
Tetreau also took a moment to thank the group of Fairfield veterans who have served in an array of foreign wars who were in attendance.
“It’s an honor and a privilege to join you here today,” he said. “It has been 100 years since World War I. It was supposed to be the war to end all wars.
“We have our veterans to thank for our protection through all of the intermittent wars that have been fought up to today.”
Boy Scout Senior Platoon Leader John Cassett, 16, was with his Fairfield Troop 10 to help set up for the ceremony and to salute those who have served in the armed forces.
“We’re here serving the people who have served our country, those who have given up their basic rights to protect ours,” Cassett said. “We’re basically trying to return the favor, it’s really the least we can do.”
Troop 10 is Fairfield’s oldest Boy Scout troop and was started in 1912. Also in attendance was Fairfield Cub Scout Troop 89, many of whom filter into Troop 10 after fifth grade, Troop Committee Chair Ruta Leonard told The Daily Voice.
The event, which closed down a section of Old Post Road for about an hour, ended with the singing of "God Bless America" by all those present.
“This wall of honor may be missing a few names… but it’s not just for those who paid the ultimate price,” Tetreau reminded the Fairfield residents in attendance.
The first selectman asked, that in the remembrance of the day, if any one notices a Fairfield resident or former resident who has served or is currently serving in the armed forces, to call his office at 203-256-3030 and the town will have the name added to the Wall of Honor.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.