Cambridge Legion continues 45-year Memorial Day Color Guard tradition

Barb McBreen, Cambridge/Huxley Correspondent
Cambridge Legion continues 45-year Memorial Day Color Guard tradition

Volunteers from the Cambridge American Legion #233 have traveled to cemeteries throughout southern Story County to honor veterans since Memorial Day was declared a holiday 45 years ago.

“We’ve been doing this for as long as I can remember,” said Henry Rumbaugh, Huxley resident, who has been a member of the Cambridge American Legion for 51 years.

At each cemetery, flowers are placed on a veteran’s memorial or monument, followed by this prayer: “These flowers may wither, but the spirit of which they are a symbol will endure until the end of time.”

The Color Guard carries flags and presents a 21-gun gun salute. That is followed by “Taps,” which will be played by buglers Sam Foster and Alexa Kersey, who are both Ballard High School students.

“It’s a privilege to honor all our veterans and fallen soldiers each year on Memorial Day,” said Scott DeYoung, commander of the Cambridge American Legion #233.

This year, the Legion will make its first stop on Sunday, May 29, at the Center Grove Cemetery at 2 p.m.

On May 30, Memorial Day, the members will start at Cory Grove at 8:45 a.m. and arrive in Elkhart at 9:30 a.m. The Elkhart ceremony includes the national anthem by Craig Ellyson, Pastor Kevin Jones from the Elkhart Christian Church will lead the prayer, the Cambridge American Legion will present colors and the bagpipes and drum will be performed by the MacKenzie Highlanders.

Cemetery Locations and event times:

Sunday, May 29

2 p.m. - Center Grove Cemetery - one–half mile north of Hwy. 210 on 610th Avenue, just south and east of Cambridge

Monday, May 30

8:45 a.m. - Cory Grove/Byers Cemetery – one-and-a-quarter mile east of Elkhart on NE 126th Street and a quarter mile south

9:30 a.m. - Elkhart Cemetery – located on the east end of Elkhart on NE 126th Street or E. Walnut Street.

The Color Guards arrival time depends on the length of ceremonies at each cemetery, but the Legion members plan to end at Cambridge between 11:15 and 11:30 a.m.

White Oak Cemetery – three miles north of Elkhart on NE 46th Street and three-quarters-of-a mile west on NE 42nd Street.

Palestine Cemetery – one mile west of I-35 on Hwy. 210

Fjeldberg Cemetery – one-and-a-half miles west of I-35 on Hwy. 210 at the intersection of Hwy. 69

Lincoln/Midvale Cemetery – one mile north of Huxley on Hwy. 69

Walnut Grove Cemetery – two and half miles north of Huxley on Hwy. 69 and three-quarters of a mile east on 280th St.

Cambridge Cemetery – north of Cambridge on 580th Avenue