More than 400 people joined the City of San Marcos for a Veterans Day Ceremony to celebrate and thank the hometown veteran heroes on Wednesday, Nov. 11.
Taking place from noon to 3 p.m. at Helen Bougher Memorial Park, 1243 Borden Road, the program celebrated local veterans though a formal military ceremony. Lunch was followed by a traditional reception with complimentary cake provided by Mission Hills High School and coffee and tea provided by Old California Coffee Company.
The military ceremony featured the presentation of colors by the Camp Pendleton United States Marine Corps and musical performances by Doreen Treadwell and the San Elijo Middle School Jazz Band. Retired Colonel Greg Rassatt, who has served more than 25 years of active duty Army Service including hazardous duty tours in Bosnia and Kuwait, will serve as the Master of Ceremonies.
Each year the program celebrates all veterans while highlighting the wartime experiences across different conflicts. This year’s theme, entitled “Korea: Remembering Veterans of a Forgotten War,” focused on a conflict that had no full mobilization. Close to 1.8 million members of the American military served in Korea. Of that number, over 100,000 were wounded. Almost 37,000 died in the war theater. Some 8,000 remain MIA.
Three local Korean War veteran guest speakers—Navy veteran Joe Johansen, Marine veteran Joe De Armas, and daughter Mary Borevitz of Marine veteran Arthur Chidester declared missing-in-action— shared their wartime experiences.
The San Marcos observance was one of several Veteran’s Day ceremonies in North County, from a parade in Fallbrook and a school big-band concert in Valley Center, to events in Oceanside, Escondido, Carlsbad and Solana Beach.
Meanwhile at Escondido, Escondido’s annual Veteran’s Day Observance was held at 11 a.m. Wednesday at Grape Day Park’s Wall of Courage. The annual event was organized by the Allied Veterans Council, a team of Commanders of American Legion Post 149, VFW Post 1513, and Disabled American Veterans Chapter 70.
Among other Veterans Day events around the region:
- at 10 a.m., a ceremony was held at the Veterans Association of North County, 1617 Mission Ave.
- at 10:15 a.m., the Fallbrook Veterans Day Parade marched along Main Street from Fallbrook Street to Village Square, where a ceremony honoring veterans will be held
- at 11 a.m., an observance took place at the El Cajon Veterans Memorial, with colors presented at 1 p.m. by the MCAS Miramar Color Guard, both at 200 Civic Center Way
According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Veterans Day was first declared in 1954 by President Dwight D. Eisenhower to honor all soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines who served the nation. The holiday replaced what had been known as Armistice Day, which marked the end of World War I