The Bloomingburg Masonic Lodge No. 449 conducted its annual Memorial Day ceremony at the Bloomingburg Cemetery Monday at 9:30 a.m.
Lodge member Wayne King served as the master of ceremonies for the event and gave the history of Henry Casey Camp No. 92 Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War (SUVCW), which has for several years decorated the grave of Civil War Medal of Honor recipient Cpl. Henry, who was a longtime officer of the Masonic Lodge.
Company C, 20th Ohio Volunteer Infantry Sons of Veterans Reserve, which is the military arm of the Henry Casey Camp, served as the Color Guard and fired a musket salute during the ceremony.
Lodge member Bill Cupp delivered the invocation and benediction and used information from an Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite degree to explain how President Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address on Nov. 19, 1863.
Washington Municipal Court Judge Vic Pontious recited the Gettysburg Address from memory, and retired Miami Trace High School American history teacher Robert E. Grim, who now serves as the national commanding general of the Sons of Veterans Reserve, delivered the Memorial Day address. He emphasized the role the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) played in starting what was originally called Decoration day and reviewed how it evolved into Memorial Day.
Grim explained the unique role the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War plays in trying to promote the memory of the Grand Army of the Republic since the SUVCW was created by the GAR in 1881 and became the legal heir to the GAR following the death of the last GAR member in 1956.
Grim also noted that over 500 military veterans are buried in the Bloomingburg Cemetery, including several veterans from the American Revolutionary War. He gave special attention to three Bloomingburg veterans buried in the Bloomingburg Cemetery: Cpl. Henry Casey, World War I Distinguished Service Cross recipient Sgt. John Wrobbel and Civil War Army Private Marion Judy who died during the Civil War at the age of 20 and had the Bloomingburg GAR Post named in his honor.
John Pfeifer rendered the military honor of taps for the veterans buried in the Bloomingburg Cemetery.