Mayor Gary Christenson’s Veterans Day remarks

At the WWI monument dedication ceremony on 11/11/2018

It is often said that we should always look forward to the future and not dwell on the past, but that is not the case today, on November 11th. This is a day when we pause as a nation to thank our Veterans for their sacrifice, their sense of duty and for their loyal service. Few have given more to our country than the uniformed men and women who have protected, defended and preserved the ideals that shape our way of life.

But, today, we also go back in time to especially pay tribute and give thanks to the men and women from Malden who fought in World War I. We do this by unveiling and dedicating a memorial on the 100th Anniversary of the end of that war that will forever honor these brave heroes in one location for the first time in city history.

This tribute came about through the hard work of several people who were committed to permanently memorializing the sacrifices of these heroes. They include Kevin Jarvis, Debbie Burke, Kathleen Manning Hall, Butch Russell, Paul Condon, Steve Ultrino, Chuck Ranaghan, Jim Cahill and Kevin Molis. In addition, two local business owners, Anthony Decotis of Town Line Luxury Lanes and Chris Tkach of Idle Hands Brewery donated $25,000 between them while the State Delegation assisted us in securing funds through the Secretary of State’s Office with the support of Malden’s Historical Commission. We are also grateful for the generous contribution of the Bayrd Foundation, City Councillors, and many of our residents across the City.

I am incredibly proud of all these efforts but more importantly, I am certain that the men and women whose names are forever etched on the panels behind me would be proud too. President Harry Truman said, “Our debt to the heroic men and valiant women in the service of our country can never be repaid. They have earned our undying gratitude. America will never forget their sacrifices.”  

After this ceremony is over, we will go back to looking toward the future, but let us do so never forgetting the sacrifices of the Malden men and women on this memorial – and, with a renewed sense of appreciation for all our Veterans who courageously accepted the responsibility to defend their country when duty called. Thank you.