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The Molalla Loyalty Day rally will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday, May 1, in the Molalla Fire Hall.

by: PATRICIA CARROLL - Loyalty Day will be celebrated at 6 p.m. May 1 at the Molalla Fire Hall.May 1 is Loyalty Day. In honor of the occasion, the Molalla VFW Post 3973 and its Ladies Auxiliary will hold a patriotic rally at the Molalla Fire Station in recognition of the day. The hour-long event will begin at 6 p.m.

Loyalty Day serves as a specific occasion when all American citizens can publicly reaffirm their loyalty to the United States of America. It’s a time for Americans to pledge themselves to maintain a free society in which loyalty is respected and encouraged.

Truly a VFW-inspired holiday, Loyalty Day was created by the Veterans of Foreign Wars organization in1921. Then on July 18, 1958, Congress designated May 1 of each year as Loyalty Day to foster loyalty and love among Americans for our country.

The nation’s founders are remembered on Loyalty Day, which is celebrated in communities across the United States of America with parades and ceremonies. In Molalla, Patricia Carroll, a member of the VFW Ladies Auxiliary, has organized the Loyalty Day rally for several years.

“I got the idea to have a community rally, a positive event,” Carroll said. “We are still standing on our founding fathers’ principals, the Pledge of Allegiance, the National Anthem, flying the American flag. Those are our basic rights as Americans for showing our patriotism.

“It’s too bad so many are losing the desire to continue these traditions, and that’s why I include Molalla’s youth in our Loyalty Day event,” she said. “Children need to learn respect for our flag and our country. How can they learn that if they are not taught the principles of patriotism? And without respect, you don’t take on the responsibility to protect our freedoms.”

Carroll said at last year’s Loyalty Day rally, a little boy came to the event on his ninth birthday to participate. This year, the VFW Voice of Democracy winner Andrew Axmaker and the winner of the Patriot’s Pen competition will be guest speakers.

She said the VFW would like to have as many of Molalla’s community organizations as possible participate: Boy Scouts, police and fire departments, schools, churches, Rotary, Kiwanis, Chamber of Commerce and Buckeroo royalty. Clackamas County Sheriff Craig Roberts is invited, as is Molalla Mayor Deborah Rogge.

“This is not a political event,” Carroll said. “It’s about patriotism and loyalty to our country. How our community works together.

Molalla has been here for more than 100 years and survived two world wars, the depression and recessions. If we survived that, we can survive anything. But we have to do it together.”

In his 2013 Loyalty Day proclamation, President Barack Obama stated that in the centuries since this country fought for its independence, Americans “have come together again and again to meet the challenges of a changing world . . . but with every step forward, we have reaffirmed our faith in the ideals that inspired our founding fathers. We have held fast to the principles at our country's core: service and citizenship; courage and the common good; liberty, equality, and justice for all. This is our Nation's heritage, and it is what we remember on Loyalty Day. It is an occasion that asks something of us as a people: to rediscover those ageless truths our Founders held to be self-evident, and to renew them in our own time.”

Anyone who would like to participate in the event or volunteer to help organize is asked to call Patricia Carroll at 503-829-9600.


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