Nick Slavik will speak on Memorial Day

By Chuck Kajer, Managing Editor

New Prague will hold its annual Memorial Day observance Monday, May 25.

The traditional observance will include a parade down Main Street and program at the Veteran's Memorial on the south side of Memorial Park. Nick Slavik of New Prague, a veteran who has served in Afghanistan and Iraq, will be the featured speaker for the program.

Slavik, who is First Vice Commander of the American Legion Post 45 of New Prague, will speak on leadership and sacrifice.

Cemetery visits

Earlier that morning, the New Prague Veterans Honor Guard will gather and visit six area cemeteries, paying tribute to those veterans interred in each. The Honor Guard will assemble beginning at 8:15 a.m. at the Park Ballroom clubroom. They will leave at 8:45 and make the rounds of six cemeteries. The schedule:

9 a.m. - St. Patrick

9:35 a.m. - St. Benedict

9:55 a.m. - Lanesburgh

10:15 a.m. - Union Hill

10:30 a.m. - Czech National

10:45 a.m. - St. Wenceslaus

At each cemetery, a brief service will be held and a list of veterans buried in that cemetery will be read.

The parade

Participants in the parade will gather at the New Prague City Hall at about 11 a.m. The parade travel south on Central Avenue to Main Street, continue east on Main to Lincoln Avenue, then south on Lincoln to the Veterans Memorial in Memorial Park.

All veterans are welcome to take part in the parade, as are Legion and VFW auxilians. There will be a float, provided by American Legion member George Tupy, to carry those not able to walk the route.

The Veterans Honor Guard will lead the parade, which also includes Blue Star servicemen and women and their families, the Fourth Degree Knights of Columbus, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts and the New Prague High School Band.

The program

Immediately following the parade, at about 11:30 a.m., a program will be held at the Veterans Memorial. Tom Tupy will be the master of ceremonies, and Father Kevin Clinton of St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church will give an invocation. Mayor W.A. Bink Bender will give a welcoming address, followed by a prayer offered in memory for all veterans in the area.

After Slavik's speech, he and Veterans of Foreign Wars Commander Mike LaDuke will read the names of deceased veterans from the community who are buried elsewhere. Following the reading of names, there will be a rifle salute by the Honor Guard and the playing of taps.

In the event of inclement weather, the program will be held in the Park Ballroom. Refreshments will be served to parade participants after the program in the Legion clubroom.

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