Holley and Clarendon honor veterans, dedicate new flag pole on Memorial Day

By Kristina Gabalski, Correspondent Posted 30 May 2016 at 12:00 am

Photos by Kristina Gabalski – Jacob Crandall salutes while his father, John, raises the flag for the very first time at the newly dedicated Hillside Cemetery Memorial during Memorial Day ceremonies Monday morning. Jacob worked on flag pole and display for his Eagle Scout project.

HOLLEY – The Memorial Day observance was especially meaningful this morning in Holley and Clarendon, as the new Hillside Cemetery Memorial was dedicated. Eagle Scout candidate Jacob Crandall – Boy Scout Troop 59 – worked on the memorial to honor the brave men and women of the U.S. Military who are buried at Hillside.

The memorial consists of an impressive 30-foot spun aluminum flag pole with a pentagon-shaped concrete base inlayed with five granite stones bearing the insignia of each branch of the US military.

Jacob said he is happy with the results of his efforts. “It’s nice to see it finally done,” he said.

The base of the memorial features a concrete pentagon-shaped base inlayed with five granite stones representing each branch of the US military.

Clarendon Town Historian Melissa Ierlan said she and Jacob’s father, John Crandall (a veteran of Desert Storm and Afghanistan), had been talking about a memorial for years. John Crandall explained that the black posts and chain surrounding the flagpole signify that it is, “a place to mourn and pay respect … to remember those who have served.”

The new flagpole replaces one put in place 46 years ago by the family of Paul Mandracchia, who was killed in action in Vietnam. The original flagpole was put up in Paul’s memory as well as the memory of other residents who died serving their country.

The U.S. flag lowered from the former flagpole for the last time this morning was presented to Sara Mandracchia, Paul’s niece.

She said she was honored to receive the flag and called the new memorial, “beautiful…. it is a nice tribute.”

The U.S. Flag lowered from the former flag pole is presented by the American Legion Jewell Buckman Post #529 in Holley to Sara Mandracchia.

Before the service at Hillside Cemetery, local veterans, municipal leaders, and law enforcement officials, including Orleans County Sheriff Randy Bower, took part in the annual Memorial Day observance in the Village of Holley. Sheriff Bower said the day is a time to, “Remember the fallen… and to honor their service and sacrifice.  We thank them.”

Members of the Jewell Buckman Post #529 American Legion Auxiliary place a wreath at the War Memorial Monument in Holley during ceremonies Monday morning.

A member of the Holley Memorial Day observance Honor Guard holds the U.S. Flag during ceremonies outside the Jewell Buckman American Legion Post.

Alex Tschetter, wearing patriotic hat, showed his true colors Monday morning while waiting for Memorial Day ceremonies at VFW Post 202 in Holley. He is joined by his brother, J.T.

Honor Guard members fire a salute during ceremonies at VFW Post 202 in Holley in observance of Memorial Day Monday morning …

During Memorial Day ceremonies at Hillside Cemetery, Hank Wagner, WWII Combat Veteran; his son Jerry Wagner, Vietnam War Combat Veteran; and grandson J.J. Wagner, Afghanistan Combat Veteran, laid the wreath for American Legion Jewell Buckman Post #529 in Holley.

Flags are lowered by Boy Scouts for the last time at the former flag pole in Hillside Cemetery in Clarendon.

Members of Boy Scout Troops #59 prepare for the dedication of the new Hillside Cemetery Memorial Monday morning.

A display of newspaper clippings and other military artifacts was set up in the Hillside Cemetery Chapel Monday morning. Those attending Memorial Day observances were welcome to visit.

Fr. Mark Noonan, pastor of St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church in Holley, leads prayers during ceremonies in observance of Memorial Day Monday morning at Holy Cross Cemetery in Clarendon.