Mount Gilead has announced plans for its annual Memorial Day celebration. The festivities will open with a parade which will form at 12:30 p.m. on Monday, May 29, at the Cherry Street school. Starting time for the parade is 1 p.m.

The parade will leave the school and follow West Union Street, east to Main Street, and south on Main Street to Marion Street. It will turn left at the light on Marion Street and proceed east to the Rivercliff Cemetery. Ceremonies at the cemetery will begin at 1:30 p.m.

Daniel Fricke, who is coordinating the Memorial Day celebration, said the program at Rivercliff Cemetery will include Pastor Jeff Canankamp, of Trinity United Methodist Church, issuing a welcome, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance and introductions led by retired United States Air Force Lt. Col. Gregory S. Mooney.

This year’s Memorial Day speaker will be Tim Sharrock, who was drafted into the United States Army during the Vietnam conflict and was trained at Fort Knox in Kentucky. After basic training, he was trained in reconnaissance intelligence and then attended Armor Officer Candidate School and was commissioned as an officer.

Sharrock is a lifelong Mount Gilead resident and a former village council member. He also served as the president of the Morrow County Chamber of Commerce and is a 50-year member of Kiwanis. Along with his wife, Connie, Sharrock has been on 43 church mission construction trips around the world. He has served as a volunteer for the Gideons, as the Ohio president of Gideons, and as an international officer for 10 years.

Under the direction of Ross Runyan, the Mount Gilead High School Marching Band will participate in the parade and program along with Cub Scout Pack 56 of Mount Gilead and the Color Guard and Firing Squad from VFW Post 8054 and AMVETS Post 87.

Following the cemetery services, the parade participants will regroup and move to the Veterans Park at the Morrow County Courthouse on East High Street. A brief ceremony will include a prayer by Canankamp, the placing of wreaths by officers of local veterans’ associations, and a 21-rifle salute with taps concluding the Memorial Day events.

Parade and program participants and their families are invited to a lunch at VFW Post 8054, located at 4960 State Route 61 in Mount Gilead, following the ceremony.

Fricke gave special thanks to Cub Scout Pack 56 for placing flowers and flags at Rivercliff Cemetery, as well as to Larry and Mia Shotwell for supplying the sound system at the cemetery and to the Mount Gilead Police Department for traffic control.

For additional information, Fricke can be contacted at 419-947-9437.