Each Memorial Day, the Village of Arlington Heights, Ill., conducts a Memorial Day parade and ceremony. The parade honors our veterans. The ceremony honors and remembers our Fallen Heroes - the 58 young men from our town who died in the service of our nation, from the Civil War to Afghanistan. This is the true purpose of Memorial Day.
Memorial Park in Arlington Heights is dedicated specifically to honoring and remembering the military service of our residents. At the center is a 15-foot bronze sculpture - the Eternal Flame - which symbolizes our community's commitment to honoring all those who served in the military. Over 700 commemorative bricks document the service of individual veterans through the generations. A special section displays 58 commemorative bricks - one for each Fallen Hero. As such, this provides a year-round resource for residents to view and remember.
Typically, about 1,000 residents attend our annual Memorial Day ceremony, including 10 to 15 Gold Star Families. Each year, we bring our community's promise to these families: "As long as one veteran lives in Arlington Heights, as long as one patriot resides in our town, your Fallen Heroes will ALWAYS be honored and remembered, and NEVER will they be forgotten."
As we read each name, a bell is tolled by a Gold Star Family member. We conclude with a 21-gun salute and Taps.