Flag Day and Naturalization Ceremonies – Cleveland, Ohio
On Friday, June 12, the Western Reserve Society SAR Archibald Willard Color Guard, and Northeastern Ohio Chapter SAR Color Guard, participated in the combined 239th Flag Day Anniversary, the US Army’s 240th Birthday, and the Naturalization Ceremony hosted at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in downtown Cleveland. This program was sponsored by the Association of the U.S. Army, and the Joint Veterans’ Council of Cuyahoga County. This year the event took place on Friday, since the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service and US District Court do not have naturalization ceremonies on weekends. The program took place on the Plaza outside the R & R Hall of Fame, where the weather was windy, warm and sunny.
The program started with the posting of the Colors by the U.S. Army Recruiting Battalion, Cleveland Post followed by the SAR Color Guard. There were greetings from a number of dignitaries and local groups, including the U. S. Army’s recognition of the Soldiers of the Year by Newton D. Baker, Greater Cleveland Chapter of AUSA, to SSG Matthew D. Shafer; PFC Mark A. Horton II; and SSG Warren E. Newton.
The guest Speaker was Chief Judge Solomon Oliver Jr. of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio, who swore in 30 new citizens. SAR participants included John Franklin, Claude Custer, and Lee MacBride of the Western Reserve Society Archibald Willard Color Guard, and Jim Gilbert and Dan Matheke of the Northeastern Ohio Chapter Color Guard. After retirement of the colors to close out the ceremony, everyone congratulated the new citizens and were available for pictures. The Army’s birthday cake was enjoyed by all.
In the Saturday morning Cleveland Plain Dealer, there was a photo of the Western Reserve Society Archibald Willard, and Northeast Ohio Chapter Color Guard in front of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on the front page.