May 12, 2023 By Carol Britton Meyer
The 17th Annual Field of Honor — hosted by the Sons of the American Legion Squadron 118, Cohasset — is a moving Memorial Day tribute to all veterans who have honorably and selflessly defended American values and freedoms by posting flags in honor of these brave men and women, or in their memory, on the Healing Field at 98 Summer St.
The project, which started on a small scale, has grown to more than 1,000 flags. The Field of Honor pays respect not only to the 38 Cohasset soldiers who lost their lives in foreign wars, but also to the late Tom Wigmore, who created the Cohasset Sons post. He and the Sons founded the Healing Field.
This project coincides with the commemoration of Memorial Day in Cohasset and has townwide support. “The Healing Field is a signature event in Cohasset’s Memorial Day Observance,” said Cohasset Veteran Services Officer Philip Mahoney, who plays a big role in planning Cohasset’s annual Memorial Day Observance. Memorial Day is May 29, with a parade and ceremony planned for that day. (See details below.)
Field of Honor highlights are as follows:
- Posting of flags, Saturday, May 20
- Flags placed in town cemeteries, Sunday, May 21
- Field of Honor dedication ceremony, Saturday, May 27, 1 p.m.
- The Field of Honor — an awe-inspiring sight — is open to the public daily from May 20 to June 3.
The driving force behind this effort is Commander Edmund P. Karam III, with Mahoney’s full support.
“The Field of Honor is in concert with the solemn remembrance of Memorial Day, which is about all the young men and women soldiers who never came home,” Karam told the Cohasset Anchor. “For many Americans, it’s a time to pay honor and respect to those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.”
Every year, the Sons holds a Healing Field T-shirt design contest for Cohasset High School students. “This is a way to get kids involved,” Karam said. In addition, the Sons present every Cohasset and Scituate graduating student who chooses to join a ROTC program or to enter the service of their country with a cloth flag to commemorate that choice.
There are a number of sponsorship levels for purchasing flags, and everyone — not only Cohasset residents, but those living in other South Shore communities as well — is invited to participate in this show of support for all veterans. An individual flag may be purchased for $50.
Each flagpole is inscribed with the name, rank, and branch of service of a veteran or loved one or a special sentiment. After the dedication of the Field of Honor on May 27, the flags and poles are the sponsors’ to take home to display in their yards if they wish to do so, or they may be donated to the Sons of the American Legion.
“Each of the 1,000 flags that fly at the harbor represents a serviceman, a servicewoman, or a loved one who made the extreme sacrifice for his or her country and people who took the time and donated the money to commemorate them,” Karam said. “That’s why the Field of Honor is magic. It’s a great community event in a town that gets it — how their freedom was, is, and will be protected in the future. The American flag represents all the things that we hold dear in life — home, family, country, friends, and freedom.”
All male descendants adopted sons, and stepsons of members of The American Legion are eligible to join the Sons, which is a way to show support for veterans, their families, and the community.
For further information about the Field of Honor, call (781) 689-5606 or visit the George H. Mealy Legion Post #118 at 98 Summer St. “You don’t have to be a veteran to enjoy a cold drink and good company at the Legion post” is their message to the community. All are welcome.
Visit https://www.healingfield.org/event/cohassetma23/ for more details about the 2023 Field of Honor and flag sponsorship opportunities or to make a donation. Flags are available for purchase online with a credit card at this website.
Author :Carol Britton Meyer
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