On Veterans Day in Kennebunkport,  participants will attend a dedication of the expanded veterans memorial on the grounds of American Legion Post 159.

Arundel and the Kennebunks will mark Veterans Day with ceremonies on Nov. 11. In Kennebunkport, a memorial at American Legion Post 159 will be expanded and dedicated. Dan King photo

In Kennebunk, American Legion Webber-Lefebvre Post 74 hosts a flag retirement ceremony on Water Street.

In Arundel, there will be a Veterans Day service at the war memorial near the fire station on Limerick Road.

All take place at 11 a.m., Nov. 11. The public is welcome to the events that mark all those who served – those who came home, and those who did not, those who served stateside, and those who served overseas.

And in the lead up to that day of remembrance, on Sunday, Nov. 7, Kennebunk Baptist Church will host veterans at a church service held annually for many years. The service begins at 11 a.m. The Rev. James King said veterans will be asked to stand and be recognized, among other expressions of appreciation.

At American Legion Post 159 in Kennebunkport last week, plans were being made for the memorial dedication. The memorial, which bears the names of those who served – and of 11 who were killed in action – is being moved to a more visible location, and a statue of the Fallen Soldier, a gift to the Post, will be placed alongside it.

The memorial, originally placed in 1987, marks the service of those from World War II through Vietnam. Members will read the names of those killed in action, said Chris Meyer, commander for Post 159.

They include Sgt. Robert Benson, Sgt. Terry Drown, Capt. Albert Fletcher, Pvt. Byron Hoff, Lt. Donald Huff, Cpl. Jack McLean, Sgt. Richard Merrill, Cpl. Kenneth Perkins, Sgt. Charles Rouleau, Sgt. Richman Simmons and Lt. Robert Warner.

In Kennebunk, Bran McBride said those who have American flags that are tattered and torn are encouraged to bring them to the post for the retirement ceremony. Those who wish to bring their worn flags prior to Veterans Day are asked to place them in a bag and hang them on the door. of the post.

The Arundel Historical Society hosts a Veterans Day service annually at the memorial. The ceremony on Nov. 11 is scheduled to be brief because of the ongoing pandemic, said Velma Jones Hayes.

Veterans Day, originally called Armistice Day, was first proclaimed on Nov. 11, 1919, by President Woodrow Wilson, one year to the day that marked the end of World War I. Congress passed a resolution in 1926 for an annual observance, according to online sources. Nov. 11 became a national holiday beginning in 1938. In 1954, after World War II and after American forces fought in Korea, the 83rd Congress amended the act of 1938 by striking out the word “Armistice” and inserting in its place the word “Veterans.” With the approval of the legislation on June 1, 1954, Nov. 11 became a day to honor American veterans of all wars.

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