The Memorial Day ceremony is one of the largest ceremonies held in Southern California, where local leaders and families have traditionally gathered at the L.A. National Cemetery to pay their respects. Nearly 90,000 service members dating back to the Civil War, including 15 Medal of Honor recipients, are buried at L.A. National Cemetery.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the 131st Memorial Day Celebration will be different than prior years: With physical distancing guidelines, the public will not be able to attend.
The celebration will be produced by ABC7’s sister station KABC-TV Los Angeles.
“The annual Memorial Day ceremony is such an important way for the community to come together and honor the nearly 1.2 million veterans of greater Los Angeles. Despite the challenges of this unprecedented time that prevented a physical gathering, we wanted to preserve the tradition and deliver a way for the community to still safely experience it,” said Cheryl Fair, president and general manager of KABC-TV.
Eyewitness News anchor David Ono will emcee the ceremony live from West L.A. He will be joined onstage with keynote speaker Brigadier General Michael Leeney, deputy commanding general of the 40th Infantry Division. L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti will join the ceremony virtually in a pre-recorded tribute, as well as Congressman Ted W. Lieu who will appear from Washington, D.C., to honor members of the armed forces; Rabbi Ed Feinstein from Valley Beth Shalom Synagogue will lead the invocation, and Monsignor Frank Hicks from St. Basil Catholic Church will give the benediction before the traditional “Echo Taps.” Additional speakers will appear on-site from four stages spatially placed throughout the cemetery to adhere to social distancing.
You can watch the ceremony live at 10 a.m. right here on ABC7news.com or download our new apps for Fire TV, Android TV, Apple TV and Roku to stream the event to your TV.
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