By Alvin Salge, Commander, VFW Post 7139

Memorial Day weekend we remember and honor all Service men and women who gave their lives to protect us, our freedom, and way of life during all wars from the Civil War to the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars.

On Saturday, May 25, crosses and VFW medallions will be placed on veterans’ graves at the Santa Ines Mission, Chalk Hill, Oak Hill, and Saint Mark’s cemeteries. 

At Oak Hill more than 900 veteran graves will be decorated starting at 9 a.m..  The public is invited to view or assist this solemn observance. 

VFW Post 7139 members will hand out red poppies at the front of Albertson’s in Buellton from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, May 25-26.  The red poppies were first distributed after World War I to honor the service men and women who perished in that war. 

On Memorial Day, May 27, American Legion Post 160 will conduct short ceremonies at 10 a.m. in Chalk Hill, 10:30 a.m. in Santa Ines Mission, 11 a.m. in Oak Hill, and 11:30 a.m. in Saint Mark’s cemeteries. 

VFW Post 7139 will conduct a hallowed VFW Memorial Day Ceremony at 10 a.m. at the Solvang Park Flag Pole.  The ceremony will honor all veterans and their families, but especially those who served in the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars. The ceremony will include The Santa Ynez High School Band under the direction of Les Rose; Vandenberg Senior Officer and VFW/American Legion Post Speakers; Boy Scouts; and Flat Fender Club vintage military vehicles. 

The Memorial Day remembrance includes a 229-year span in some 60 military actions that claimed 1.4 million lives. Sacrifice is meaningless without remembrance. America’s collective consciousness demands that all citizens be aware of, and recall on special occasions the deaths of their fellow countrymen during and after wartime.All Valley veterans, residents, and their families are invited to come and join in these solemn events.  This information can be seen at the website