THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
Raise Flag-Members of the Peshtigo American Legion raise the American Flag prior to Memorial Day Services in Peshtigo Monday May 25. The flag holds special significance because it was the flag Steven Drees was brought home with after his death. His parents Dawn Gossen and Paul Drees along with Steven's brother Chuck and Steven's son, Steven were present for the services. They are pictured unveiling the Desert Wars Monument.
Desert Wars Memorial Dedicated At Memorial Day Services In Peshtigo
Issue Date: May 27, 2020
Despite restrictions caused by COVID-19, a number of spectators attended Memorial Day services at Riverside Cemetery in Peshtigo on Monday, May 25. The Veterans of Foreign Wars Kniskern-Neumann Post 8813 and Carlson-Alguire-Hoaglund Post 312 conducted the services to honor our nations war dead led by commander Tony Matecki.
Chaplin Virgil (Ron) Kaempf, said the opening prayer and lead the Pledge of Allegiance followed by reading of the names of deceased veterans. Veteran Ken Holdorf placed a wreath at the statue of the doboy as did Sue Matecki. Navy veteran, Jim Swiatnicki laid a wreath on the water to honor those who died at sea. A closing prayer was said by Kaempf.
A highlight of the ceremony was the unveiling of the Desert Wars Memorial Statue. The family of Steven Drees, who died in 2009 fighting in Afghanistan had the honor of unveiling the statue. His mother Dawn Gossen, father Paul Drees, brother Chuck Drees and Steven's son Steven was present. The statue was made possible by donations from individuals. Commander Matecki said many people stepped up to the plate and donated money to make the project a reality. Matecki presented plaques to Russ Martin and Eugene Frank for their outstanding contributions. Commander Matecki then thanked
everyone that made monetary donations to the Desert Wars Monument. He said "a big thank you to Ed Langer of Ed's Concrete for building and donating the great base platforms the monuments are mounted on. Thank you to John Berth from Berth and Rosenthal for locating and mounting the Monument and plaque and thanks to Erik's Garden Center for donating the beautiful flowers. Also thank you to Chuck Gardon and the Peshtigo Times for all your help with our advertising and printing". Matecki praised two local businessmen, both Vietnam Veterans, for their continued support of our beautiful monument area, Mr. Russ Martin and Mr. Eugene Frank. Matecki also said thank you to the family of the Marinette County veteran, Steven Drees who paid the ultimate price defending our country, for taking the time to unveil the new Desert Wars Monument. Lastly Matecki thanked Bill Warren, Robert Ellison, Dennis Czapiewski and Randy Ehlers on Color Guard duty, Virgil Ron Kaempf Chaplin, Rob Warren rifle salute and Ken Holdorf, Sue Matecki and Jim Swiatnicki on wreath presentation.
In his closing remarks Matecki said, we remember the very special veterans who died at war. They are our heroes, these men and women who gave their all, who made the ultimate sacrifice. Their lives on earth have ended, but their souls live on.