Solemn holiday memorial services planned in region

From staff reports

Memorial Day observances and solemn services will be held across the area over the extended holiday weekend.

Here is a rundown of some of the events scheduled:


Memorial Day events will be observed Monday with two services and a parade downtown.

A memorial service for U.S. Navy veterans will be held at 9 a.m. on the 13th Street Bridge. This will be followed by a service at the Franklin Cemetery Civil War Monument at 9:30 a.m.

The parade will step off at 10 a.m. with lineup starting at 9 a.m.

The community service at Bandstand Park will begin at 11 a.m.

The program will begin with the national anthem, sung by 2LT Victoria Stachelrodt, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance, led by Major Don Beatty Composite Squadron 501 Civil Air Patrol.

Opening and closing prayers will be provided by VFW Post 1835 Auxiliary Chaplin Julie Mansfield. Master of ceremony is Rick McCleary, guest speaker will be CW3 (Ret.) Randy J. Stachelrodt, (a 29-year U.S. Navy and Army veteran with multiple deployments) and the grand marshal will be Dale Walter, U.S. Army Veteran (Vietnam era).

The names of deceased Venango County veterans of the past 12 months will be read at this service by Richard B. Supak.

The V.E.T.S. Honor Guard is in charge of the community service and the parade, with John Flick serving as chairman.

Parade lineup: The parade begins at Chestnut and 13th streets and proceeds north onto 13th Street to Liberty Street, where it turns right (east) on Liberty Street and ends at the Venango County Vietnam Veterans Honor Roll at South Park Street.

1st Division: (begins at 13th and Chestnut streets and goes backward to Railroad Street): Franklin police cruiser, V.E.T.S. Color Guard, 1942 WWII Jeep grand marshal Dale Walter, V.E.T.S. Honor Guard bus, state Rep. R. Lee James, Mayor Doug Baker and Franklin City Council members, Franklin H.S. Black Knight Marching Band, Catholic War Veterans Post 1741, Franklin VFW Post 1835 and Auxiliary

2nd Division: (Railroad to 12th streets): Franklin Silver Cornet Band, Franklin Elks Lodge 110, Starlite Express Baton, Major Don Beatty Composite Squadron 501 Civil Air Patrol U.S. Airforce Auxiliary, Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), Edify Learning Center, D.U.V. Daughters of the Union Veterans of the Civil War

3rd Division (12th Street, between Chestnut and Railroad streets): Venango County Sheriff’s Office, Pennsylvania Gun Owners Association, Christian Motorcyclist Association (PA Prayer Warriors), Community Ambulance Service, Jack D. Hoffman/1951 Ford truck, Bob Sandieson/1962 C10 Chevy short-bed truck/1929 Model A Ford, Bryan Sandieson/1984 CJ-7 Jeep, U.S. Army Reserves 298th Transportation Company, Sandycreek Township Volunteer Fire Department, Rocky Grove Volunteer Fire Department, Franklin Fire Department

Oil City

— VFW Post 464 will hold a Memorial Day Service at 11 a.m. Monday in Central Plaza, in front of Oil City Library.

VFW Senior Vice Commander Mike Reno will be host and U.S. Army veteran Sgt. Mike Lilly will be guest speaker.

Roll call of the departed will be read by Dennis Quick, VFW Post 464 past post commander; John McCally, American Legion Post 32 post commander; and Julie Bryan, B.P.O. Elks Lodge 344 past exalted ruler.

Placing of the memorial wreaths will follow with Quick, McCally and Bryan, along with Diane Stevenson, of the VFW Post 464 Auxiliary.

Raising of the Colors will be performed by the V.E.T.S. Honor Guard, with instrumentation by Mostly Brass.

At the conclusion of the ceremony, all are welcome at VFW Post 464, 2 Relief St. for refreshments.

As it does each year, James M. Henderson Post 32 of the American Legion in Oil City purchased new flags for the bridges and streets downtown.

Flags are purchased and made possible for display through the post’s flag program via donations and support from many friends, neighbors, local businesses and the city.

Donations may be made to the American Legion Post flag fund by sending a check to P.O. Box 873, Oil City, PA 16301 for next year’s program.

— The Oil City Knights of Columbus will celebrate its annual Memorial Day Mass at 10 a.m. Monday at Calvary Cemetery.

Those attending who would like to sit are asked to bring a lawn chair.

The Mass will be at St. Joseph Church in the event of inclement weather.


A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Monday at Rockland Cemetery.

The speaker will be Austin Switzer.

In case of rain, this service will be moved to Rockland United Methodist Church.

A dinner at the church will follow the service.


A Veterans Memorial Garden Dedication will take place at Wolf’s Camping Resort in Knox at 10 a.m. Monday.

The dedication will be at the top of the hill at the flagpole.


Shearer-Schick Post 454 of the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7132 will host commemorative services on Sunday and Monday.

Beginning at 3 p.m. Sunday at Veterans Memorial Park, Bob Carmichael will be master of ceremonies; pastor Noel Jack, associate pastor of the Baker Street Church of God, will be guest speaker; lay minister Brenda Haws will provide the invocation, prayer and benediction; and Terry George will present a special musical selection.

In the event of inclement weather, the service will be held in United Methodist Church in Rimersburg.

The parade will begin at 9 a.m. Monday, starting at the former Rimersburg Elementary School. The program at the cemetery will begin upon arrival of the parade procession.

Steve Wiencek will be master of ceremonies. Rev. Dr. Jack Gareis, pastor of Jerusalem United Church of Christ, will offer the invocation, prayer and benediction. Guest speaker will be Capt. Troy Mong, who retired from the United States Navy in September 2021.

The Union High School marching band, under the direction of Lisa Hummel, and the Union High School concert choir, under the direction of David Gibson, will present musical selections.

Three Union High School eighth-graders will participate: Alex Walzak will recite the “Gettysburg Address,” Kiara Ackerman will recite “In Flander’s Fields” and Riley Kriebel will recite “America’s Answer.”

In the event of inclement weather, the program will be held at 9 a.m. at Union High School.


American Legion Post 102 in Brookville will host Memorial Day services at several locations around the Brookville area on Monday.

The traditional service will be held inside the Jefferson County Courthouse starting at 11 a.m. The featured speaker will be Herbert McConnell, a Vietnam War veteran.

After the service, members of the Brookville Honor Guard will provide a rifle salute.

At noon, American Legion members will have a flag-raising ceremony at North Fork Heights.

The third event will be at 1:30 p.m. at the Brookville Cemetery, where the Brookville Honor Guard will salute the veterans buried in that cemetery. The service will be held at the Union Army monument in the cemetery.

A special service for a Civil War veterans will follow.