Memorial Day observances set |

Memorial Day observances set

Tim Mutrie

In observance of Memorial Day on Monday, an interfaith service will be held at Aspen’s United Methodist Church, 200 E. Bleeker St., followed by a ceremony at the Roaring Fork Valley Vietnam Veterans Memorial, located next to the county courthouse.

The public is welcome at both events.

The 11 a.m. church service will be led by Richard Lyon, minister of the United Methodist Church and also a Vietnam veteran.

“With the service, the idea was to do something a little more formal, because we’ve never had an interfaith service on Memorial Day before,” said Tom Buesch, a local involved with veterans’ activities. His brother, Rick, is a Vietnam veteran. “We want to include the whole valley in this and make it a valleywide event.”

Following the service, a ceremony will be held at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, situated between the Pitkin County Courthouse and the Courthouse Plaza.

“It’s formally called the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, but it has kind of branched out to include veterans of the other wars,” Buesch said. “I think we’ve had veterans from World War I on through Desert Storm attend and participate in the Memorial Day ceremony since the memorial was dedicated in 1987.

“That’s always been the focal point for veterans’ activities on Memorial Day,” Buesch continued. “Usually people just talk and tell stories or say whatever they want to say, and there’ll be some readings. It’s very low key.”

“The ceremony is open to everybody and everyone’s welcome to speak, to say anything, leave anything, dedicate anything, they’re more than welcome,” said Dan Glidden, a Vietnam veteran and Aspen police officer. “The idea behind this is to remember those who didn’t come back.

“I have kids and to them, Vietnam is ancient history,” Glidden said, “so it’s important to let them get involved with it, and understand what it was all about and why we’re remembering it.”

Jack Reid, of the city streets department, will play Amazing Grace on guitar at the ceremony, and several local Boy Scouts will participate in the flag bearing and wreath dedication during the ceremony, Glidden said.

And in an effort to maintain tranquility during the ceremony, the block of Main Street in front of the courthouse and the Courthouse Plaza building will be closed off.

“It’s just to keep it quiet,” Buesch said.

Also, poppies will be for sale about town on Monday to support disabled American veterans.

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