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San Luis Obispo Memorial Day ceremony features Central Coast Navy Vice Admiral

Posted at 3:12 PM, May 29, 2023

American Legion Post 66 San Luis Obispo has hosted a Memorial Day Remembrance Service for more than 100 years, and the organization continued that tradition Monday.

The ceremony, co-hosted by the Central Coast Veterans Memorial Museum, included a flag presentation and raising, the National Anthem, and the Gettysburg Address. Central Coast resident and retired Navy Vice Admiral Bill Bowes spoke at the ceremony about Memorial Day and his experiences in the military. Bowes says you can take a moment of reflection on your own but going to an actual Memorial Day event put on by a local military-affiliated organization goes much further.

“Here, other people have the same feeling that you have if you're attending, that you're here to commemorate those who lost,” said Vice Admiral Bowes. “You may have family, friends that you're personally commemorating. It's an important time, and it's important for our nation to continue to commemorate those who gave their lives.”

“We asked them to protect us, and they were ready to give their all. Many of them had to do so,” said Bart Topham, president of the Central Coast Veterans Memorial Museum. “We need to appreciate that and remember them. As long as we honor their memory, they're still alive in that sense and we think that's very important.”

Following the service, the organizations hosted a barbecue luncheon for those attending.