Due to weather, the Front Royal Christmas Festival and Parade has been postponed until Sunday, December 2nd. The times of the events remain the same.
Coat Drive: Give the gift of warmth this season
Union Bank & Trust will be holding a coat & blanket drive accepting all donations at their branch location (473 South Street) from December 10 to January 31. Gently worn or new coats, blankets, gloves and hats will be accepted. All donations will be given to the Front Royal Thermal Shelter to distribute to those in need. Help someone stay warm this season!
Front Royal Thermal Shelter in a non-denominational, non-profit, volunteer run shelter providing overnight shelter to adult homeless citizens. For further information, please call Kathy Leonard at 540-551-2641 or email KathyLeonardHL@gmail.com.
Eleven courthouse chimes mark 100th anniversary of World War I’s end
The 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War was marked Sunday, November 11, as the Warren County Courthouse clock chimed 11 times – the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month – and American Legion Post 53 Vice-Commander Clarence Hartsell began a quiet, 45-minute ceremony.
A relatively small crowd of about 60 gathered in the courthouse grounds, most of them veterans. Many wore distinctive Legion caps, and others were wrapped in coats against the 45-degree weather, depicting their service of record. Despite the first cold snap of the season, skies were blue and brilliant sunshine provided some warmth for speakers and spectators alike.
The Sunday ceremony’s attendance was obviously affected by its clash with regular church services throughout the area and this year, being a Sunday observance of Veterans Day, no school bands were available. However on this 100th anniversary of the end of the first great global conflict of the 20th Century, organizers felt it important to mark the occasion on the precise date and time of the armistice that halted a war so horrific in its modern weaponry and casualty count that it was for a short time believed to be a war that would end widespread human warfare.
Commemorative wreaths were laid at memorial sites on opposite sides of the courthouse forecourt saluting town and county service personnel who’d given their lives in America’s wars, while others honored all of those who fought in World War I, the “war to end all wars.”
Appropriately, the Giles B. Cook Post 53 of the American Legion introduced U.S. Marine Corps veteran William Sealock, a Front Royal Town Councilor, whose military record included active duty in five combat zones, including those in Vietnam and the Middle East, who said he was there to honor all veterans of all wars.
Sealock described himself, born in 1944, as a “war baby”, offspring of a Gold Star mother. He came of a military family whose members served, some dying, in World War II, and in later American wars.
He revealed he was wounded on the battlefield in South Vietnam but cited one of his duties as a Marine Corps “grunt” as a career highlight – it was as a mailman for the troops during “Operation Starlight” in which 42 marines died.
The mail carrier brought brief moments of joy to those caught up in the heat of battle and the soldier who delivered welcome news from home declared he had “no apology for being a ‘grunt’ performing this duty. Sealock rose through the ranks to retire as a Chief Warrant Officer and returned to civilian life as a Defense Department contractor. After serving on the Front Royal-Warren County Economic Development Authority Board of Directors, he was elected to Town Council in 2016. (To see and listen to Sealock’s approximately 15-minute welcoming address, guest speaker Larry Funk, and a complete video of the ceremony, go to the Royal Examiner video presentation accompanying this article)
Hartsell called for a moment’s silence for those who died in battle while guest speaker Funk, Post 53 commander, honored “every man and woman who has honorably served their country in every war since the Revolutionary War.”
He noted that while the “war to end all wars” – World War I – did not live up to its reputation, it did lead to the formation of the American Legion which then, and to this day, is in the business of alleviating the stresses of Americans returning from active duty. He noted that homelessness is most prevalent today among veterans and he offered a cure: employment. He asked potential employers to give major consideration to employing veterans, particularly those who have been wounded in service.
“Give them who gave us our precious freedoms a shot at the American dream,” he implored.
Among organizations represented at the 2018 annual ceremony, apart from various other officers of the American Legion, were: Jeff Cook, Commander of Veterans of Foreign Wars, Post 1860; Dennis Henline, Exalted Ruler, Fraternal Order of the Elks, 2382; Richard Crawford, Veteran’s Chairman, Elks, 2382; and Wayne Sealock, Governor, Lodge 829, Loyal Order of the Moose.
Opening prayer and benediction were by Cindy Kokernak while John Kokernak sounded “Taps” to end the ceremony. This year just one dog was in attendance, Cody, accompanied by his pal Stephen Kurtz.
(Our contributing writer, Malcolm Barr Sr., is a veteran of the Royal Air Force, and his son, Malcolm Barr Jr., is an Iraq war vet who served 10 years with the U.S. Air Force and represents a contracting company in military intelligence adjacent to Langley AFB in Virginia. Barr Sr. recollects attending every Armistice Day (now Veterans Day in the U.S.) since emigrating from the UK in 1955, often more recently with a canine companion representing the “dogs of war”)
The 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month… never forget.
The Giles B. Cook Post 53 of the American Legion held its Veterans Day ceremony on the Warren County Courthouse lawn on Sunday, November 11th. This date marks the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.
The Royal Examiner’s camera was there to capture the moment and to honor all veterans. Special remarks were made by William Sealock, a Marine veteran and current Town Councilman and by Larry Funk, a US Army veteran, retired Warren County Deputy Sheriff and current Commander of the Post 53.
Originally called Armistice Day, commemorating the signing of the agreement that ended World War I at 11:00 A.M., November 11, 1918, this federal holiday was changed to Veterans Day in 1954. At that time, it became a day to honor all the men and women who have served in the armed forces of the United States.
The American Legion was chartered and incorporated by Congress in 1919 as a patriotic veterans organization devoted to mutual helpfulness.
Sunday ceremony in Front Royal to mark 100th anniversary of WWI Armistice Day
A ceremony is planned on Sunday in front of the Warren County Courthouse, to mark the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day, which ended World War I.
The event, sponsored by Giles B. Cook American Legion Post 53, gets underway at 11 a.m. Post spokesperson Bonnie Jones said Friday that the event will feature remarks from Front Royal Town Councilman William Sealock and Clarence “Buddy” Hartsell, amongst others.
Veterans are invited back to the American Legion Post for a luncheon following the ceremony Ms. Jones stated.
All-you-can-eat pancake breakfast
Come out this weekend to support the Front Royal Little League! They will be hosting an all-you-can-eat breakfast with fun for the whole family, including picture opportunities with Paw Patrol and Peppa Pig. For the adults, be sure to check out the crafters and vendors.
- When: November 11th starting at 9am.
- Location: Front Royal Volunteer Fire Department – 211 N Commerce Ave.
- Call for your time slot: Charlene Thomas 703-409-5654
- Menu: Scrambled eggs/Pancakes/Sausage gravy & biscuits/Juice/Milk/Coffee
- Pictures: $5 – with Paw Patrol & Peppa Pig
- Tickets: $10 Adults / $5 Veterans with ID / $5 Children 3-8
- VENDORS & CRAFTERS
- Please support the Front Royal Little League! Thank you!
This community video is brought to you by Jennifer Avery (and kids) & Heidi Rutz (and kids):
Hometown Halloween 2018
Lots of Halloween action on Main Street last night for Hometown Halloween! Ranging from the adorable baby princess costumes to the scary t-rex characters, everyone enjoyed collecting treats from local businesses. NextHome Realty Select handed out orange themed treats to ghouls, pirates, vampires, paw patrol, and even Alice in Wonderland! Fun time was had by all.
Enjoy these photos!