Honoring Memorial Day in the SCV

The WWII eara aircraft of The Condor Squadron fly over the crowd gathered at the Veteran's Memorial Wall to honor U.S. Army, Vietnam combat veteran, William Reynolds at Eternal Valley Memorial Park and Mortuary in Newhall on Saturday, 020621. Dan Watson/The Signal

With Memorial Day weekend upon us, it’s almost time to honor the men and women who died serving the country. 

Both Los Angeles County and city of Santa Clarita officials are doing just that through various Memorial Day celebrations planned throughout the weekend.  

Across the Santa Clarita Valley, American flags can be seen flying on many of the city’s major streets.  

In addition, the city has put up its Hometown Heroes Military banners, honoring actively serving military members who either live in the SCV or used to, as well as Gold Star banners on the approach to the Fallen Warriors Memorial Bridge, which honors service members who were killed or died while serving. 

Tribute to Veterans and Military Families 

The weekend’s celebrations are set to kick off with a virtual program hosted by county Supervisor Kathryn Barger, whose 5th District includes the SCV, in partnership with the California Department of Veterans Affairs. 

The Tribute to Veterans and Military Families event is a longstanding tradition in the 5th District, allowing Barger to thank service members and their families for their service. 

Following the ceremony, which is set to spotlight members of the county’s workforce who are veterans, there are breakout sessions scheduled with experts who are expected to provide information about benefits and resources to veterans, service members and their families. 

This year’s event is also expected to recognize the upcoming 20th anniversary of 9/11. 

The event is scheduled to begin with a ceremony at 9 a.m. Saturday, followed by breakout sessions at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. For more information and to register for the virtual event, visit bit.ly/2QunC3S. 

Eternal Valley Memorial Day Tribute 

The Santa Clarita Valley Memorial Day Committee’s annual Memorial Day Tribute is set to return to its in-person format, with a focus on honoring veterans of Desert Shield/Storm, also referred to as the Gulf War, this year. 

The AT-6 planes of the Condor Squadron are set to fly overhead to commence the ceremony, followed by Max Morgan, former Navy SEAL and the committee’s public affairs officer, set to be the event’s master of ceremonies, and David Jackson, the committee’s vice president and a Desert Shield/Storm veteran himself, as the keynote speaker. 

In addition, local Brownies, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts are expected to place more than 5,000 American flags on the graves of veterans at Eternal Valley. 

The audience can also visit the Veterans Memorial Wall for the reading of the more than 900 names inscribed on it after the ceremony.  

The Memorial Day Tribute is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. Monday at Eternal Valley, located at 23287 Sierra Highway in Newhall. To RSVP, visit eventbrite.com/e/santa-clarita-memorial-day-tribute-2021-tickets-152238572669 

Celebrate safely 

California Highway Patrol officials are also reminding residents to celebrate Memorial Day safely.  

As Californians get ready for holiday weekend travel, CHP officials are scheduled to conduct a Maximum Enforcement Period through the holiday weekend.  

The MEP is set to begin at 6 p.m. Friday and continue through 11:59 p.m. Monday, with a focus on properly using seat belts, though officers will also be watching for distracted drivers and any signs of impaired driving. 

Approximately 78% of those killed in a crash within CHP jurisdiction during the 2020 Memorial Day MEP were not wearing a seat belt, and statewide, at least 31 people died in a crash during the holiday weekend, per CHP data.  

In addition, CHP officers made 854 arrests for impaired driving during the 78-hour traffic safety campaign. 

Motorists are also reminded to protect children through the proper use of car seats, booster seats and seat belts, with the law requiring that children under 8 ride in the back seat and that a child under 2 is always secured in a rear-facing car seat.  

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