Armed Forces Day is being observed this year by a local men’s chorus, Voices for the King, as they will present a patriotic concert “Let Freedom Ring!”
The free event will take place on Saturday, May 18, at 7 p.m. at the Ripon Christian High School Performing Arts Center, located at 435 N. Maple Ave. in Ripon.
In addition to Voices for the King singing a number of patriotic songs, the Color Guard from the American Legion Post 263 of Escalon will present the colors along with a flag-folding ceremony. Pastor Chuck Roots, Capt. U.S. Navy (Ret.) has been asked to speak, as well as Mike Anderson, who is the military/veteran liason for Congressman Jeff Denham.
Armed Forces Day was created on August 31, 1949 to replace separate Army, Navy and Air Force Days. The unification of the Armed Forces under one department – the Department of Defense – led to this single-day celebration. This was done under the administration of President Truman, who “praised the work of the military services at home and across the seas.” In order to show the nation’s appreciation for the military forces, the first Armed Forces Day, held on Saturday, May 20, 1950, was celebrated by parades, open houses, receptions, and air shows. The theme of that first celebration was “Teamed for Defense,” chosen as a means of expressing the unification of all the military forces under a single department of the government. The purpose was not only to honor the military but also to expand the civilian understanding of what our military forces were called upon to do for our country. And thus, throughout the years, Armed Forces Week begins on the second Saturday of May and ends on the third Sunday of May, with the large celebration being on the third Saturday.
This concert will be a tribute not only to our present military branches, but also to their families and to our veterans. The community is invited to join in celebrating and honoring those who fight for our freedom, and in thanking God for our country and the freedoms that, by His grace that we enjoy. For more information please call (209)612-9438.