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Annual veterans service to return

Tom Jackson • Nov 11, 2013 at 8:48 AM

There’s a bit of history attached to the time for Sandusky’s annual Veterans Day service on Monday.

It will be held on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of the year.

That’s when World War I ended — at 11 a.m. Nov. 11, 1918 — and it’s a time that was celebrated on Armistice Day, a holiday that was changed to Veterans Day in the U.S. after World War II.

Want to Go?

WHAT: Veterans Day service

WHEN: 11 a.m. Monday

WHERE: First Presbyterian Church, 265 Jackson St., Sandusky

The past national commander for Veterans of Foreign Wars, Dr. John Wasylik, will speak during the Monday service.

Wasylik tried to enlist in 1945 but was rejected. He was then drafted in 1950 and served in the Korean Conflict.

“I was in charge of a machine gun unit in Korea,” he said Wednesday. “I came home from Korea without a scratch, but my outfit got wiped out the next month.”

Wasylik recalled that one of the soldiers he served with never complained but still worried about his mother, who had suffered a nervous breakdown when the man’s brother became a prisoner of war in World War II. That comrade of Wasylik’s later died.

“That family has done so much for America and deserves to have a commendation that they probably never had,” he said.

“Some families give so much,” he said. “I gave up time out of my life, but I didn’t lose any limbs. I didn’t get blown up … I went to the 60th anniversary of the signing of the [Korean] armistice, which the Defense Department put on in Washington, D.C., on July 27.”

The Rev. Daniel Miller, of First Baptist Church, will deliver the invocation and the benediction. The Vacationland Band will perform, and other local musicians and honor guards also will contribute.

After the service, everyone will be invited to walk over to Veterans Memorial Park, across the street from the church where the service is being held.

Monday’s service has been an annual event in Sandusky for about 25 years, said George Mylander, chairman of the committee. He said about 75 Sandusky schoolchildren in the fourth, fifth and sixth grades are expected to attend.

“It’s not a service that’s a fun thing. It’s a very serious thing,” Mylander said. “I hope the kids see that tens of thousands of Americans are dead because of a few people, including Hitler.”

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