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The Memorial Day program is introduced on Monday, May 27 at 9 a.m. at the Janesville Waldorf Pemberton high school.

JWP celebrates Memorial Day

Memorial Day was observed at the Janesville-Waldorf-Pemberton (JWP) high school auditorium at 9 a.m. Monday, May 27. The program began with representatives of Janesville American Legion Post 281 posting the colors, followed by the JWP Choir, under the direction of band director Adam Hille, singing “The Star Spangled Banner.” 
Pastor Kathy King from the Prairie Lakes Parish of the United Methodist Church provided the audience with a message centered around John 3:16 about how eternal love surrounds all people and their loved ones. She said the example set by military members who serve and have served the country reflects God’s love to all people in the nation. It’s with the sacrifice of the fallen military, King added, that others unite in their love for each other.
Allie Hanks read Abraham Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address.” 
The JWP Band performed “Salute to America’s Finest” under the direction of Joshua Sorenson, the high school music teacher.
Eric Daschner read “General Logan’s Orders,” which were issued by General John Logan calling for a National Day of Remembrance for those who died in the Civil War. “Decoration Day” became the basis for what is now known as Memorial Day.
This year St. Clair native and JWP teacher Samuel Schruin, who served in the Middle East, was the speaker for the ceremony. He graduated from a local high school in 2016 and pursued a degree in social studies at Minnesota State University in Mankato. While studying, he also joined the Army National Guard and became part of the Red Bull Sea Company. He served in combat operations in Africa; his current rank is staff sergeant.
“This is not just a holiday,” Schruin reminded those in attendance. “It is a solemn day of reflection, gratitude, and reverence. It is a time to pause and honor those who have given their lives to our nation so we can enjoy the freedoms we have today.”
Schruin asked audience members to keep in mind the courage, dedication, and selflessness of the fallen heroes who came from all walks of life but bonded for a purpose.
“Unity comes from a shared sacrifice,” Schruin ended.
The JWP choir and band joined in performing “Sounds of America” together.
Next Ruby Gunsolus read “In Flanders Field '' which Canadian physician and Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae composed during World War I after he lost his friend, Alexis Helmer, who died in the Second Battle of Ypres.
Miles Kruger performed Taps, which was followed by a moment for silence and reflection.  Members of Janesville Scout Troop 89 demonstrated the ceremonial folding of the flag.
The JWP band played “Amazing Grace,” a hymn written by John Newton, a former slave trader in rural Buckinghamshire and who later became a reverend.
The memorial service closed with King giving a benediction and then a simulated rifle salute from members of Janesville American Legion Post 281.


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