Gold Star Mother Ursel Mayo and Vietnam combat veteran and Shelby Township Veterans Event Coordinator Phil Randazzo, accompanied by Blue Star Mothers, place a wreath during the Shelby Township and Utica Memorial Day Ceremony May 26 in Shelby Township.

Gold Star Mother Ursel Mayo and Vietnam combat veteran and Shelby Township Veterans Event Coordinator Phil Randazzo, accompanied by Blue Star Mothers, place a wreath during the Shelby Township and Utica Memorial Day Ceremony May 26 in Shelby Township.

Photo by Erin Sanchez


Shelby Township, Utica honor soldiers at Memorial Day ceremony

By: Kara Szymanski | Shelby - Utica News | Published May 26, 2019

 Bill Vasilides, a Korean War veteran, leads the Pledge of Allegiance along with the Boy Scout Oath during the ceremony.

Bill Vasilides, a Korean War veteran, leads the Pledge of Allegiance along with the Boy Scout Oath during the ceremony.

Photo by Erin Sanchez

 Veterans stand during the ceremony to be recognized for serving.

Veterans stand during the ceremony to be recognized for serving.

Photo by Erin Sanchez

SHELBY TOWNSHIP/UTICA — Utica and Shelby Township joined together as one for a Memorial Day gathering May 26 in Shelby Township.

Residents, veterans and families were invited to Shelby Township’s Memorial Day ceremony at 1:30 p.m. Sunday at the Veterans Memorial located just outside the municipal building at 52700 Van Dyke Ave.

Memorial Day is a day to remember all those who lost their lives in service to the country in the armed forces.

Due to rain, the communities gathered inside the Township Hall instead of outdoors at the memorial.

The ceremony featured guest speakers including Ray Jahn, the Boy Scout leader from Troop 154, and Ursel Mayo, a Gold Star Mother and Gold Star chairperson for Macomb County. Patriotic songs were performed by the Lakeside Assembly of God Choir, located in Shelby Township, and dignitaries and Scouts were also in attendance.

“On this day, we memorialize our fallen by dedicating the ceremony to the Gold Star Mothers, Fathers and families,” Mayo said.

“We are the mothers of fallen soldiers. … Soldiers who sacrifice their lives protecting our country is the highest sacrifice these families can make. Their service reminds us that America’s freedom and democracy must be protected and defended by all means necessary, and sometimes with life,” she said.

Vietnam combat veteran and Shelby Township Veterans Event Coordinator Phil Randazzo led the event.

“It (the event) went over very nicely, and even though we usually do it at the memorial, it came out just as great inside the boardroom. I would like to thank all the residents for showing up and especially the Gold Star Mothers and Blue Star Mothers, given what they have given up,” Randazzo said.

During the ceremony, 17 soldiers from Macomb County were named in remembrance.

Tim Waage, Lakeside’s worship and creative arts director, performed taps on the trumpet after a 21-gun salute to conclude the Memorial Day event.

For more information about Shelby Township’s Memorial Day ceremony, call Randazzo at (586) 739-4046.