By Robert Haugh
The Mission City will honor Veterans Day with a ceremony at 3 p.m., Saturday, November 11 at the Veterans Memorial at Central Park.
The ceremony, a long-running tradition since the opening of the memorial in 2002 is presented by the Santa Clara Veterans Memorial Committee, American Legion District 13, American Legion Post 419, American Legion Post 564, and VFW Post 3982.
The ceremony includes speeches, playing of TAPS, a performance by the Cupertino Symphonic Band, and more. Editor’s Note: The band will start performing at 2:30 p.m.
The event is usually attended by the Mayor, members of the Santa Clara City Council, Police and Fire Chief and other elected leaders and dignitaries.
Mayor Lisa Gillmor and Councilmember Suds Jain are expected to be there.
Dedicated on Veteran’s Day, November 11, 2002, the Santa Clara Veterans Memorial was the brainchild of Mission City residents Jim and Marlys Lee, Jim Ash and Ray Gamma.
Those four presented the idea to the City Council in 2001, developing the design, and raising $260,000 to build it. The Memorial features granite pedestals highlighting each branch of the United States Military forces — Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, Merchant Marine and Navy.
One of the memorial’s most unique features is its 5,000 paving bricks.
Glancing at the names stamped in the bricks, you’ll be surprised how long it might take to find just one name. You’ll find everyone from former Santa Clara City leaders, to NFL star Pat Tillman, and a myriad of others.
Generations of great men and women who fought for our freedoms are forever memorialized at the memorial, one of the few that represents all military branches.
Their heartfelt, often unbroadcasted, sometimes surreal memories are forever etched into history at the Santa Clara Veterans Memorial at Central Park.