The Red River Valley Veterans Memorial will be holding a Veterans Day Observance at the Love Civic Center on Nov. 8 at 1:30 p.m.
Veterans Day, formerly known as Armistice Day, was originally set as a U.S. legal holiday to honor the end of World War I, which officially took place on November 11, 1918. In legislation that was passed in 1938, November 11 was “dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be hereafter celebrated and known as ‘Armistice Day.'” As such, this new legal holiday honored World War I veterans.
In 1954, after having been through both World War II and the Korean War, the 83rd U.S. Congress — at the urging of the veterans service organizations — amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word “Armistice” and inserting the word “Veterans.” With the approval of this legislation on June 1, 1954, Nov. 11 became a day to honor American veterans of all wars.
This year, the North Lamar band will be playing patriotic music from 1:20 p.m. before the observance begins at 2 p.m.
Veteran Johhny Williams will welcome guests followed by the posting of the colors by the Paris Police Department. The invocation will be by Lawrence Daingerfield followed by a Quilts of Valor presentation in which three quilts will be presented.
There will also be a tribute to Tom Mallison, a 101-year-old World War II veteran who passed away in July 2020, by Tony Corso. Mallison was a Tech Sergeant in the 8th U.S. Army Air Corps and took movies with a hand-held movie camera flying over Europe in the bombers prior to D-Day. During the Normandy invasion, Mallison flew with the paratroopers that were the first wave of the invasion and took still pictures.
During the program, veterans will receive a challenge coin and the program will focus on World War II. The coins are sponsored by the late Jane Helberg and her husband Tim.
Additionally, an update on Phase IV of the Red River Valley Veterans Memorial will be given.
The observation will conclude with the retiring of the colors and Stars and Stripes Forever.