Several members of Henry Casey Camp No. 92 Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War (SUVCW) recently participated in the 65th-annual Remembrance Day ceremonies in Gettysburg commemorating President Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address.
On Nov. 19, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln delivered his now famous Gettysburg Address during ceremonies dedicating a new national cemetery on the Gettysburg, Pennsylvania battlefield for soldiers who died during the Battle of Gettysburg in July of that year.
The highlight of the annual Gettysburg Remembrance Day activities is a Civil War military parade organized and sponsored by the Sons of Veterans Reserve (SVR), which is the military department of the SUVCW. Members of Henry Casey Camp 92 are also members of SVR unit Company C, 20th Ohio Volunteer Infantry.
The national commander of the SVR is Major General Robert E. Grim, a retired Miami Trace High School American History teacher, who is also a past national commander-in-chief of the SUVCW. Grim is a U. S. Air Force Vietnam War veteran and a member of the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame.
This year, under clear skies and 45-degree temperatures, an estimated 20,000 spectators lined the over one-mile-long parade route through the streets of Gettysburg on Nov. 20 to witness approximately 4,000 members of the SVR and Civil War re-enactors, both Union and Confederate, march through Gettysburg to commemorate President Abraham Lincoln’s famous Gettysburg Address.
Grim led the parade and other Henry Casey members participating in the parade were: Shane Milburn, a past Ohio department commander, and a member of the national SUVCW Council of Administration; James L. Grim, Jared Robinson, Irven Cassio, Michael Cassio and Joshua Cassio.
Albert Woolson, the last surviving Union soldier of the Civil War, died in 1956 at the age of 109. That same year the SUVCW erected a statue of Woolson in Zeigler’s Grove on the Gettysburg Battlefield honoring all Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) veterans. The SVR conducts a wreath laying memorial service every year at this statue. Grim served as master of ceremonies at this service which was attended by several hundred people.
At an SVR awards ceremony honoring outstanding SVR members for their accomplishments during the year, Shane Milburn was awarded the SVR Distinguished Service Medal for his work as adjutant of the SVR 3rd Military District, which encompasses Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana and Michigan; and his work as commander of Company C, 20th Ohio Volunteer Infantry. He also received a certificate of commendation for serving with the SVR Color Guard at the national encampment (convention) of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War held in early August of this year in St. Louis, Missouri.
The 65th-annual Remembrance Day closed with the annual Civil War military ball conducted by the SVR at the Wyndham Hotel. Over 400 dancers attended the military ball. Each year, all the proceeds from the ball are donated to the Gettysburg National Military Park for monument preservation. To date, the SVR has made donations totaling almost $90,000.