Ramaroa a blessing on Memorial Day
Ramaroa, the newly opened QEP park centre, proved its worth as a haven for the crowd of over 120 people who turnout out in freezing conditions for this year’s Memorial Day service on Monday May 28, 2018.
Over the past eight years, the Trust has had a remarkable run of good weather for its annual services at the US Marines Memorial. This year the luck ran out, as temperatures hovered around 4degrees with intermittent rain and bitterly cold southerly conditions.
Executive/Secretary for the Trust, Allie Webber, says Ramaroa was a real saviour for the event. “It was fantastic to advertise it as our wet weather venue – without Ramaroa we would have had to cancel.” she says.
“We’re incredibly grateful to NZDF, the United States Embassy, GWRC Parks staff, Kapiti Brass, the No 49 Squadron Air Training Corps, singers, students, and staff from Kapiti and Paraparaumu Colleges and Paekakariki School and to all the volunteers and visitors who adapted quickly enabling us to run our first indoor service.
“So many people helped make the service a success; we’re really proud of the way it represents the World War II story in Kapiti and the way it commemorates US Armed Forces who lost their lives or were injured - fighting for our freedom.
“We were particularly honoured to have 97 year old US Navy Veteran Jack Rogo attend the service and read some of Frank Zalot’s memoir of landing tragedy on Whareroa Beach in June 1943. This segment of the service is always “very special” and as a veteran of Pearl Harbour Mr Rogo brought extra significance to the event.
The service was led by the Rev. Lyall Perris, with addresses from Susan Niblock Charge d’Affairs of the Embassy of the United States of America and Richard Benge Chair of KUSMT.