Memorial Day Ceremonies in Florida
You can locate a VA National Cemetery nearest you that is holding a 2012 Memorial Day Ceremony HERE.
FLORIDA MEMORIAL DAY CEREMONIES
SUNDAY, MAY 27
Veterans Memorial Park, Tampa, FL – 10:55 a.m.- A Memorial Day Ceremony featuring Brig. Gen. Charles Q. Brown, Jr., U.S. Central Command Deputy Director of Operations, two members of the Phantom Airborne Brigade, the CENTCOM Color Guard and a POW/MIA Empty Chair Remembrance Celebration. Veterans Memorial Park and Rear Admiral LeRoy Collins, Jr. Museum, 602 Highway 301 N. in Tampa
Sarasota National Cemetery, FL – 1:15 p.m. – A Memorial Day Ceremony featuring Florida Gov. Rick Scott and First Lady Ann Scott at the Sarasota National Cemetery, 9810 State Road 72, Sarasota, FL.
MONDAY, MAY 28
Bushnell AMVETS Ride - 7:30 a.m. - Annual Memorial Day Ride to the National Cemetery in Bushnell an extra meeting point and early departure. AMVETS Riders Chapter 44 will be leading a ride from Tampa and meet up with the Tampa chapter of the Defenders Law Enforcement Motorcycle Club for a joint ride to the Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell. Meet at the Ker's Winghouse on Hwy 301 & I- 4 – Kick Stands Up at 8 a.m.
MacDill Air Force Base – 8 a.m. - The 6th Air Mobility Wing will host a Memorial Day Ceremony at the Base Flag Pole. The events include posting of the Colors, reading of a poem, laying of a wreath, remarks by 6th Air Mobility Wing Commander Col. Lenny Richoux, 21-gun salute, playing of taps and singing of America the Beautiful. Not open to the public.
Serenity Meadows, Riverview, FL – 8:30 a.m. – A Memorial Day Service of Remembrance, open to the public, featuring speakers Hillsborough County Commissioner Al Higginbotham, Michael Whitt, Commander of AMVETS Post 44, and Walt Raysic, President of the Veterans Council of Hillsborough County, special presentations by students from Riverview High School, Spoto High School, and Boy Scout Troop 110. Serenity Meadows Memorial Park is located at 6919 Providence Road in Riverview.
Bushnell Memorial Day Ride – 9:00 a.m. – For the seventh consecutive year, the Tampa Bay Chapter of the Defenders Law Enforcement Motorcycle Club is coordinating the Annual Memorial Day Ride to the National Cemetery in Bushnell, FL - to pay tribute to those Veterans who have gone before us to ensure our freedom and way of life. The ride averages about 400 bikers. Directions: Participants plan to meet at the I-75 Interstate Rest Area located 1 mile north of the intersection of I-75 & I-275. Arrive by 9 a.m. Kick Stands Up at 9:30 am. It will be a 31 mile ride to Exit #309 to the Florida National Cemetery, which will be conducted at 1100, Monday, 28 May 2012.
Barrancas National Cemetery, FL – 9 a.m. – A Memorial Day Ceremony is set at Barrancas National Cemetery at the Naval Air Station, 80 Hovey Road, Pensacola, FL. Call for details: (850) 453-4108 or 453-4846.
St. Augustine National Cemetery, FL – 9 a.m. – A Memorial Day Ceremony is scheduled at the St. Augustine National Cemetery, 104 Marine Street, St. Augustine, FL. For information contact: Florida National Cemetery at (352) 793-7740.
Bay Pines National Cemetery, FL – 10 a.m.- The Bay Pines VA in Pinellas County will commemorate Memorial Day with a ceremony of musical performances, a firing salute and taps at the Bay Pines National Cemetery. It’s open to the public, Veterans, families and friends. More than 3,000 expected attendees. All 31,733 graves will be marked with U.S. flags to honor those who gave their lives while serving in the military. Parking is available nearby and shuttles provide. Directions: I-275 to Exit 25 (38th Avenue North). West on 38th Avenue North about five miles to Tyrone Boulevard. Turn right onto Tyrone Boulevard and proceed approximately 2.5 miles. Turn left at 95th (this is the east entrance to the VA property). Follow that road about ¼ mile and the cemetery will be on the left.
Camp Blanding, FL – 10 a.m. - Camp Blanding Memorial Day ceremony and dedication of the new Veterans Memorial Fountain at Camp Blanding Museum and Historical Park, State Road 16, Starke, FL. The ceremony will feature guest speaker Brig. Gen. Joseph Balskus, commander of the Florida Air National Guard, and a traditional military ceremony including a rendition of Taps and a twenty-one gun salute. The ceremony commemorates the men and women who have died while in military service. This event is free and open to the public.
South Florida National Cemetery – 10 a.m. – A Memorial Day Ceremony, open to the public, at the South Florida National Cemetery, 6501 South State Road 7, Lake Worth, FL. For details, call (561) 649-6489.
Sarasota Memorial Day Parade – 10 a.m. - The City of Sarasota in conjunction with the Sarasota Patriotic Observance Committee will host the annual Memorial Day parade in downtown Sarasota beginning at Main Street and Osprey Avenue. Afterward, a ceremony will be held at 11 a.m. Chaplain J.D. Hamel Park at Main Street and Gulfstream Avenue. The theme for this year’s Memorial Day ceremony is “A Nation Forever Grateful”. The keynote speaker will be Scott Bill, a local builder, whose son Brian gave the ultimate sacrifice in Afghanistan last August. Brian Bill was among 22 Navy Seal Operators who died in the largest single day loss of life for the Navy Seals in its history.
Florida National Cemetery – 11 a.m. – An hour-long ceremony honoring those who have fallen is planned at the Florida National Cemetery Veterans’ Memorial Wall, 6502 SW 102nd Avenue (Sumter County). Florida Governor Rick Scott is among the expected attendees.
Jacksonville National Cemetery – 2 p.m. - The public is invited to the Memorial Day Ceremony at the Jacksonville National Cemetery, 4083 Lannie Road, Jacksonville, FL. Call for details: (904) 766-5222.
WASHINGTON D.C. AREA
Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, VA – 10:30 a.m. - Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta delivers remarks at the National Memorial Day Observance ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery.
Tomb of the Unknowns, Arlington National Cemetery, – 11 a.m. – At the Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers, Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin E. Dempsey; Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Raymond T. Odierno; Sergeant Major of the Army Raymond F. Chandler III will lay wreaths at the Tomb of the Unknowns.
Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Washington, D.C. – 1:30 p.m. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta; Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin E. Dempsey deliver remarks and Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Raymond T. Odierno will attend the 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration.
National Memorial Day Parade – 2 p.m.- Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus will be a reviewing officer at the National Memorial Day Parade in Washington, D.C.