Another touching Memorial Day Parade and Exercise went off on Monday despite the cold and rain.
The band was there.
The veterans were there: some of them old men and some of them young women.
A Gold Star Mother who lost her son in 2008 spoke to the crowd, and said gatherings like these help her heal.
Schoolchildren even came out on their day off to cheer on the veterans and to make special readings.
But our question is why was there a small number of elected officials.
The attendance at Memorial Day isn’t mandatory for anyone; it’s like the church collection.
We won’t list off names or anything. The fact of the matter is that those who were there know they were there.
We counted six city councillors and three members of the School Committee.
Typically, the municipal elected official ranks in other communities in any Parade is bulging with excited politicians. In this year’s Girl Scout Parade, our political ranks were sparse – putting it kindly.
The trouble is that Memorial Day was a good turnout by historical standards.
The elected officials of this City are expected to set the standard, for being the leaders in the community. They are elected by the people to stand up on times like these to memorialize those that went overseas to protect us and who died in that cause.
The names on the Memorials at City Hall for which our elected officials pass by routinely are the names of real people who lived in Chelsea. Many of their families and friends still live here.
Some of them are old and long forgotten.
But the fact of the matter is there is a large number of young veterans who come to Memorial Day now.
Diana Ramirez is not an old woman, but rather a younger woman who is a Spanish-speaking woman and whose son was only 22 when he died nine years ago. That’s not a long time ago, and there are some people who still remember him.
There is little more that a person like Nelson Rodriguez Ramirez – or any of the other lost men and women memorialized around City Hall – could have done than lay down their lives.
The time has come for everyone and most importantly our elected officials to be at events like these