Contact: Joe Vargo, Perris Public Information Officer
Phone: 951-956-2120
jvargo@cityofperris.org

 

Memorial Day Remembrance

City Councilwoman Joanne Evans, a former Marine, kneels next to the grave of a Civil War veteran interred at the Perris Valley Cemetery. Memorial Day ceremonies will take place there Monday at 9 a.m.
City Councilwoman Joanne Evans, a former Marine, kneels next to the grave of a Civil War veteran interred at the Perris Valley Cemetery. Memorial Day ceremonies will take place there Monday at 9 a.m.

Perris veterans and City officials will gather Monday to remember former soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines who have died in the last year and to remember those Perris Valley residents still serving in harm’s way.

The annual Memorial Day ceremony takes place at 9 a.m. at Perris Valley Cemetery, 915 North Perris Blvd.
City Councilwoman Joanne Evans, a former Marine and commander of American Legion Post 595 in Perris, said the names of all those veterans who died in the past 12 months will be recited, and a bell will toll once to remember them and their service.

The American Legion Post and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 888 are sponsoring the Memorial Day ceremony. Mayor Daryl Busch will represent the City.
The Perris Cemetery marks the final resting place for 900 military veterans Thirteen Civil War veterans are buried there, as is one soldier who served in the Spanish-American War. Other veterans served in World War I, World War II, Korea and Vietnam.

Evans holds a poppy sold to help injured and disabled veterans
Evans holds a poppy sold to help injured and disabled veterans.

“If we forget our veterans, then we have a real problem,” Evans said. “We are only here because of the legacy they gave us. We owe our freedom to these people. We can pursue happiness because of them.”
Perris has been honoring its veterans since 1892, well before the community became a city.
Iral Evans, Joanne Evans’ husband, keeps a photo of the very first Memorial Day ceremony, then held at the City cemetery on G Street, which is no longer there. The ceremony included the firing of a rifle volley, carried out by servicemen wearing Civil War uniforms. More than a dozen members of the Evans family lie buried at the Perris Valley Cemetery.

The Perris American Legion Post has been holding services at the cemetery for 63 years.
Brady McCarron, Retired United States Air Force will be the guest speaker at Monday’s ceremony.  Military Honors Detail Team 47 will present colors and honors, led by Captain Joe Sain.  Quinn Hawley, retired USN Captain (Chaplain Corps) will do the invocation.  Joanne Evans will be the master of ceremonies. 

Veterans in Civil War uniforms fire a rifle volley during Perris’ first-ever Memorial Day Service, May 30, 1892.
Veterans in Civil War uniforms fire a rifle volley during Perris’ first-ever
Memorial Day Service, May 30, 1892. The rifle salute took place over
the grave of John Reynolds, a Civil War veteran

Bernard Foley, Perris Post 595 Commander and Auxiliary President, elect, Joni Reissman will present wreaths with VFW Post 888 Commander John Thayer and Auxiliary President Margie Stauffer.

“We continue to hold services in Perris to honor those who gave so much for the freedom of our Country and who are now resting here in Perris,” Joanne Evans said. 

“These are the veterans who served from the `Perris Valley’ when it was a growing community of farmers and businesses.  We invite you to join with us this special day to honor those who have paid the supreme sacrifice for their country and those who have served and passed on.  We should never forget them and be forever grateful for what they have done for us.”

In addition to sponsoring and taking part in the Memorial Day Ceremonies, Evans said Perris veterans groups have taken part in “Buddy Poppy” program for decades.

The Buddy Poppy--a small red flower symbolic of the bloodshed in World War I by millions of Allied soldiers in defense of freedom-- was originally sold to provide relief for the people of war-devastated France.
Later, its sale directly benefited thousands of disabled and down-and-out American veterans, a cause that continues to this day.

Perris veterans sold more than 3,500 Buddy Poppies this year.