Today is Veterans Day, when we recognize the service of all U.S. military veterans. Show your appreciation by attending the Southland Community Veterans Day ceremony at 2 p.m. today at the Lansing Veterans Memorial, located at the Lansing Municipal Airport at Burnham Avenue and Glenwood-Lansing Road.
This year’s program will remember Tech Sgt. August Olson Jr., of Lansing, whose plane was shot down in 1944 during World War II in Bruz, France. The plane's crew was recently honored with the dedication of a monument in France. Olson was a graduate of Thornton Fractional North High School and the Student Action Team from the school will take part in a recognition tribute.
Members of the Lansing Veterans Ceremonial Honor Guard will render a 21-gun salute and taps. In case of inclement weather, the program will be held in the Historic Henry Ford Hangar. For further information contact Rich Dominiak, ceremony coordinator, at (708) 862-7731 or Larry Grzywinski at (708) 474-3049.
This year I’ve had the opportunity to talk to a lot of veterans, including several World War II veterans, as the vice president of the Lansing Historical Society. I’m always so amazed at how humble these men are and how often they shy away from attention and recognition. So many stories I’ve heard I carry with me and I feel so fortunate to be able to have heard them. So many of the stories are just so foreign growing up in the place and time that we do, that it’s so hard to wrap my head around them. I've recently interviewed three local men who served their country during World War II. I thank each of them, Rudy Hartge, of Crown Point, Ralph Boardman, of Lansing, and Andrew Orich, of Hammond, for sharing their stories with me so they can be put on paper and we can continue to learn from them.
VFW hosts cooking class
The VFW Ladies Auxiliary of Calumet City Post 8141 will be hosting their annual holiday cooking demonstration and sampling buffet from 2 to 4 p.m. Nov. 18. Tickets are $25 and include a recipe booklet of the demonstrated appetizers, entrees and desserts, door prizes, the sampling buffet, wine and pop. Chef Kathy Simkus will demonstrate how to make holiday dishes and offer cooking tips, shortcuts and shopping advice. There will also be raffles to raise funds for supporting veteran programs, sending packages to troops overseas and additional charities.
Reservations can be made by calling Kathy Simkus at (708) 439-9071, Jan Malone at (708) 868-5627, or Marilyn Schultz at (708) 862-8673.
New Lansing book released Monday
I’m excited to announce that my new book, "Legendary Locals of Lansing," will be available starting Monday. The new series by Arcadia Publishing includes photos and biographical information on dozens of individuals and groups that have played a role in shaping our community. Visit the “Legendary Locals of Lansing, Illinois” page on Facebook and like it for a chance to win a free copy of the book.
From 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, I’ll be at J. J. Kelley’s, 2455 Bernice Road in Lansing, for the book launch event. I’ll be selling and signing copies and hope to see some of you there.