Memorial Day Parade in need of veterans, volunteers

By: Robin Ruehlen | Birmingham - Bloomfield Eagle | Published May 1, 2013

BEVERLY HILLS — With the installation of the new Beverly Hills Veterans Memorial Monument just over a week away, co-founder Paul Kleppert has one more request. 

“We need veterans to join us for the parade and the dedication,” he said.

“The call has been put out, and we would love to have everyone join us, whether they live in Beverly Hills or not.”

The 32nd annual Memorial Day Parade will begin at 11 a.m. May 27 at Groves High School, followed by a 1 p.m. ceremony around the flagpole in Beverly Park to dedicate the new monument and to honor all veterans for their service. The carnival will take place from noon-3 p.m. in Beverly Park.

Kleppert said the memorial has been returned to Michigan with the American flag etched on both sides and is now in the process of being engraved by Monument Center Inc. in Ferndale.

“We’ll be putting the foundation in on May 10-11, and we hope to have lights around it, eventually,” he said.

“We certainly have enough donations to provide for that, and we are very grateful to the people of Beverly Hills.”

As of April 25, the Veterans Memorial Monument Fund had received more than $5,000.

“We have had many widows and relatives of World War II veterans making donations in memory of their husbands, their uncles, their brothers,” Kleppert said.

“Any remaining balance after paying for the monument and the lighting will be given to the Parks and Recreation Board, who works with the Garden Club, as to what might be done with landscaping around it.”

Kleppert said U.S. Rep. Sander Levin has been invited to the event and will provide the village with a flag flown over the Capitol for the monument dedication.

Parade participants will include a contingent of U.S. Marines, local marching bands, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, Brownies and Little League representatives, decorated bikes, fire trucks, police vehicles, and more.

Volunteer coordinator Janice Hausman said the event is still in need of volunteers to serve food in the pavilion, as well as roaming ticket sellers.

“For the food court, we have hour-and-a-half shifts available from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and for the ticket sellers, from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.,” she said.

“We always welcome high school students for the food court, if they would like to get some community service hours in,” she said. 

Volunteers are also needed to participate in parade favorites, such as Moms with Mops, Dads & Mowers, the Briefcase Brigade, jugglers and Build Your Own Float, as well as to work in booths and sell food and tickets at the carnival.

“This is an event that has been part of our community for over 30 years, and there are many activities for kids and families,” said Parks and Recreation Board member Bill Kondak.

“It really provides a great opportunity to reconnect with your friends and neighbors.”

Veterans interested in participating in the parade or dedication ceremony may contact the Village Office (248) 646-6404. Anyone interested in volunteering at the carnival may contact Janice Hausman at (248) 647-1238 or