Waynedale Political Commentaries

How Memorial Day Came to Be ~ Voice Of The Township

For the past several months the Wayne Township Trustee Office has been at the center of some major excavation work as digging under and around the St Mary’s River has caused parking and traffic disruptions, making getting to our office difficult for workers and clients alike. But now there is a light at the end of the tunnel, so to speak, as the city plans to open the traffic flowing north on Lafayette and unveil a new structure at the intersection of Superior and Spy Run on Memorial Day, Monday, May 29, 2023.

Our office will be closed that day for the holiday, but it will be an exciting time nonetheless, as we have watched the construction going on so close to us, including in our own parking lots.

On that day Wayne Township Trustee Austin Knox will be at the Waynedale Memorial Day Parade as our trustees have been for the past several years. It is always an honor to celebrate the unofficial start of the summer season on this most patriotic holiday. The parade is such a festive event as it travels through Waynedale and then on to Prairie Grove Cemetery where it becomes a solemn tribute to the men and women who have given their “last full measure of devotion” serving our country.

Memorial Day originated in the United States just after the Civil War when residents of both the North and the South created their own traditions of honoring their fallen heroes. Most of those traditions involved placing flags and flowers and other memorabilia on the graves of soldiers. That is why the day was first called “Decoration Day,” and it is still called that by a select few. By the time the twentieth century arrived the name “Memorial Day” had evolved to honor the memory of the men and women who died while serving in all the American military conflicts, not just the Civil War. Memorial Day did not become an official federal holiday until 1971.

Normally, in May we would be holding our Family Fun Day at our office location, but this year, because of the construction we have moved the party to July. At that event we will be presenting our 2023 scholarships among other festivities.

This year marks the eleventh year we will be awarding Wayne Township’s Richard A Stevenson Sr. Scholarships (formerly the Recognizing Achievement Awards) and the sixth year for the Academic Encouragement Awards. Awards of $500 each will be given to graduating high school seniors who are moving on to higher education. And for students in grades eleven and under, we will award internet ready tablets along with certificates. If you are or know of such a student, the deadline for applying for these awards has been extended to June 2 this year; you can go to our website for more information.

We look forward to celebrating Memorial Day, at the parade and at the unveiling of the new structure at the St Mary’s bridge, and we hope you have an enjoyable and meaningful holiday as well.

Wayne Township Trustee - Austin Knox
Latest posts by Wayne Township Trustee - Austin Knox (see all)

Wayne Township Trustee - Austin Knox

Trustee Austin Knox is a Fort Wayne native who, on January 10, 2020, was unanimously elected trustee at a caucus of Democratic precinct committee leaders of Wayne Township. > Read Full Biography > More Articles Written By This Writer