Novi Mayor Justin Fischer addresses a crowd at the Fuerst Field of Honor ceremony May 22.

Novi Mayor Justin Fischer addresses a crowd at the Fuerst Field of Honor ceremony May 22.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

Novi remembers those who died in service to the US

By: Charity Meier | Novi Note | Published June 7, 2024

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NOVI — The city of Novi held its third annual Fuerst Field of Honor remembrance ceremony May 22 to pay respects to those who lost their lives while serving the United States in the military.

The event featured a dinner for just under 100 veterans, a speech by Mayor Justin Fischer, a musical performance by the Novi Choralaires, a wreath-laying ceremony, a 21-gun salute and the playing of taps by the local Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1519 honor guard.

“Memorial Day is a time for reflection, gratitude and unity as we remember those who gave their lives to protect our freedoms,” Fischer said. “Tonight we honor the heroes from our own community and across the nation who answered the call of duty with courage and selflessness. Their sacrifices have secured the liberty that we enjoy every day. We owe them a debt of gratitude that can never be repaid, but we can honor their memory by living in a way that upholds the values that they fought to protect.”

Fischer went on to explain that the tradition of the Memorial Day celebration dates back to the aftermath of the American Civil War. In 1868, Gen. John Logan declared May 30 as a day to decorate the graves of fallen soldiers with flowers, with the first ceremony being at Arlington National Cemetery with flowers being placed on the graves of soldiers who died fighting on either side of the Civil War. In doing so, Fischer said it helped to heal the “deeply divided nation.”

“Over a century and a half later, we find ourselves in a time of division and uncertainty. Yet just as our forefathers came together to honor their fallen, we too must find common ground and strive for unity,” Fischer said. “Memorial Day is a reminder that despite our differences, we are all Americans united by a shared history and a collective responsibility to uphold the principles of liberty and justice.”

“Ceremonies like this remind us of all the ones that never came back and all the ones that did come back and are not in the best of shape. And you’re just thankful that you’re here to help them out,” said Bernie Brennan, who served in the U.S. Navy during Vietnam.