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Memorial Day 2021: Taps Along The Housatonic River



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Many events and activities surrounding Memorial Day were either canceled or observed differently in 2020, due to the impact of COVID-19. American Legion District Commander Mike Kellett came up with an idea to remember departed comrades by playing “Taps” along the Housatonic River every mile, on the minute mark, every minute, beginning at 10 am, going up the river from the Long Island Sound to the Massachusetts border.

American Legion Post 202 took up the challenge in 2020 to participate, beginning at 10:10 am at Eichler’s Cove in Sandy Hook. With Sandy Hook having a large presence along the Housatonic, there were eight locations along the river. At each location, there was a musician or two playing “Taps,” a photographer/videographer, and representatives of Newtown to render a hand salute. The flag and deceased military were saluted at each location with participation by Boy Scout Troop 70, the 2nd Company Governor’s Horse Guard, American Legion Post 202 members, and other town veterans.

This year, Memorial Day is Monday, May 31, and the American Legion Post 202 is planning a reprise of last year’s program, again starting at 10:10 am at Eichler’s Cove, continuing north up the river to Brookfield.

Volunteers are needed to make this a success. It is not necessary to be a veteran to volunteer. The following volunteers are needed for each of the locations:

*Musicians to play “Taps” (any appropriate instrument);

*Veterans, Scouts, or other organizations to render a hand salute;

*Videographers and photographers to record each of the sites.

A video to commemorate the day in 2020 was assembled and is posted on YouTube at “TAPS Along the Housatonic River,” youtube.com/watch?v=gkozeqdlkk8.

A video to commemorate 2021 is also planned. This year, American Legion Post 202 would like to include photo remembrances of departed Newtown veterans. Please send photos of deceased veterans, preferably in uniform, who lived in Newtown no later than May 1 to americanlegionnewtown@gmail.com, so that the photo can be included in the 2021 video. Include the veteran’s name, rank (if known), branch of service, and era that they served.

For further inquiries or to volunteer, e-mail americanlegionnewtown@gmail.com or call 203-577-9568.

Active duty military or veterans who served honorably are invited to join American Legion Post 202. Family members may also join the American Legion family with the American Legion Auxiliary or Sons of the American Legion.

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