Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge Keep the Spirit of ’45 Alive with 70th Anniversary Commemorative Wreath Laying in New York’s Battery Park
The sound of “Taps” echoed across New York Harbor today as a group of World War II veterans and their families attended a wreath laying ceremony commemorating the 70th anniversary of the end of the Battle of the Bulge on January 25, 1945. The ceremony was held at at the East Coast World War II Memorial in New York’s Battery Park.
The Battle of the Bulge was the largest and bloodiest land battle fought by the United States during WWII, and marked the beginning of the end of the war in Europe on May 8, 1945.
The wreaths were placed at the base of the monumental bronze eagle that is flanked by eight massive granite slabs inscribed with the names of servicemen who died in WWII that faces toward the Statue of Liberty.
The public ceremony was organized by the Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge Association and attended by members of the Military Order of the Purple Heart, the Jewish War Veterans and Bugles Across America. Wreaths were donated by Dignity Memorial.
“We’re here to honor the more than 600,000 brave soldiers who fought at the Bulge, and the nearly 20,000 of them who gave their lives in the cause of freedom. Their victory signaled the beginning of the end of the most destructive war in history,” said Ralph Bozorth, Associate Director of the Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge Association, which organized ceremonies in Florida and California. .
“Those who fought and died at the Battle of the Bugle helped stop the horrors of the Holocaust ” said Alan Moskin, a member of Jewish War Veterans, who was a young Army private when his unit helped liberate a Nazi death camp in northern Austria in May 1945. “It is important that Americans never forget how their service and sacrifice literally saved civilization.”
“My father received two bronze stars for bravery during the Battle of the Bulge, so this is a very personal ceremony for me,” said Frank Hughes of Bugles Across America, who performed “Taps” at the close of today’s wreath laying ceremony. “The families of the WWII generation need to remember what they did to assure a better world for their children and their children’s children.”
Today’s ceremony is one of several that will be taking place around the country this year to 70th anniversary of the end of World War II that will will featuring flyovers by WWII vintage aircraft, ’40’s style swing dances, and other activities. Representatives of participating organizations are gathering in San Diego next month to finalize their plans for honoring the WWII legacy of American airpower, ground forces, seaborne services and the Home Front.
A highlight of the year will be a WWII 70th Anniversary Commemorative Weekend that will kick off with a “Kiss In” in Times Square on Friday, August 14, and conclude with an around the world wreath laying ceremony that will begin in the Philippines, continues across Europe and the U.S. and ends in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii on Sunday, August 16.
For more information, visit http://www.Spiritof45.org or contact Info(AT)Spiritof45.org