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Gov. Baker Takes Part in Military Heroes Fund Memorial Day Ceremony

Monday, May 28, 2018


Charlie Baker

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker along with Lt. Governor Karyn Polito took part in the Massachusetts Military Heroes Fund Memorial Day Ceremony at the Soldiers and Sailors Monument at Boston Common.

Watch the video above

In honor of Memorial Day, Baker has ordered the United States flag and the Commonwealth flag be lowered to half-staff at all state buildings from sunrise until noon and full staff from noon until sunset on Monday, May 28, 2018. 

Secretary of the Department of Veterans’ Services Francisco Urena and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh also took part in the event.

Read Baker’s speech below:

“There’s a life people lead before someone in their family is lost in the line of duty while serving this country and then there’s the life they lead afterward. The life they lead afterward—if they are resilient and they are supported and they come to grips in terms of what it is that happened to their family member—can hopefully be a positive one, and a constructive one, and a one of purpose.

I’m going to talk today about a guy named Andrew Farrar. He was a basketball player from Weymouth who died on his 31st birthday, January 28, 2005, in Iraq. In high school, he was pursued by a young woman, who was a couple years younger than him, named Melissa who eventually wrestled him to the ground and the two of them got married. They eventually had two children, Liam and Tyler, while Andy continued to serve. As he approached what would have been the end of his last tour, he was looking forward to coming home and settling in with wife and his two sons. Unfortunately for Andy and for Andy’s family, it was all going to turn out to be different.

After Andy died, Melissa died shortly after that. I’m pretty sure she died because the guy she chased and the guy she caught and the guy she had two kids with and who she thought she was going to live the rest of her life with, wasn’t going to be there.

People talk all the time about the life people lead before somebody dies and the life they lead after. But the folks who are here today who lost someone, and the families that are represented by these thousands of flags behind me, for them it was a daily personal struggle to not only put the pieces back together but to find some way to create positivity and purpose, despite the empty chair at the table. Those families have had to find the grit and the determination and the character to build a new life that in many cases came with twists and turns and obligations and heartache.

So today is very much about the flags and those they represent, but let’s never forget that they are also about the loved ones who had to put behind the fact that they lost somebody they cared so deeply about, pick up the pieces, and build a life to move forward, and for that, we should never forget.”


Related Slideshow: 15 Memorial Day Weekend Getaways in New England - May 2018

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Garden of Flags in Boston

Boston, MA

Every year, the Massachusetts Military Heroes organization plants a Garden of Flags, over 37,000 of them in front of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument on Boston Common.

Click here for more information

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Independence Trail

Providence, RI

Rhode Island’s own version of Boston’s Freedom Trail, follow the painted green line for the Independence Trail. The 2.5 mile tour of historic Providence “takes you over four centuries of history, architecture, culture, and folklore.”

Don’t worry about where to begin, the route is circular so you can start anywhere! Along the painted green trail on the sidewalks you’ll find red emblems with a phone number and a location number.

Click here for more information 

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Battleship Cove Memorial Day Ceremony

Fall River, MA

Battleship Cove will offer free admission to veterans and military personnel who show a valid ID. 

The offer lasts all weekend. 

Click here for more information

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Providence, RI

Providence WaterFire has grown to be an iconic Rhode Island event. Starting out in 1994 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of First Night Providence, it has grown to run continuously, once a month, from May-November and boasts over 80 blazing fires in the middle of the Providence River. WaterFire is a not-for-profit organization that aims to creatively transform Providence – and they do! Each event is accompanied with music by artists from around the world, varies food stands and art stands to browse as you stroll along the river. 

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Cliff Walk

Newport, RI

The Cliff Walk is one of Newport’s most famous attractions is its gilded age mansions lining the coast. Entry to the mansions will cost a fee, but with the Cliff Walk, you can enjoy views of the mansions with amazing views of the water all for free.

The 3.5 mile long path runs behind the mansions on the eastern shore of Newport. It is a National Recreation Trail – the first in New England! The majority of the walk is easy, but be sure to wear good shoes; the sand can make the path slippery. 

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CoCo Key Water Park Boston

Danvers, MA

CoCo Key in Boston is one of the largest indoor water parks in Massachusetts. Located at the DoubleTree Hotel in Boston, they offer a full day four pack for $150 - letting 4 people enjoy the park all day for a reasonable price. 

Click here for more information 

Photo: Facebook

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Decoration Day at Mystic Seaport 

Mystic, Ct. 

2018 is the 150th anniversary of Memorial Day. During this special Sesquicentennial, the Museum’s roleplayers share stories of life and the sea to ensure that no soldier or sailor, even one from the 19th century, is forgotten.

In 1868, the United States government formally instituted Memorial Day as a national remembrance of the fallen soldiers from the Civil War of 1861-1865.

At Mystic Seaport, Decoration Day ceremonies are set in 1876. In the morning, visitors are invited to the Fishtown Chapel to witness the memorials laid for local Civil War soldiers.

Click here for more information 

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Veterans Memorial Day Cruise 

Naples, Maine

Celebrate Memorial Day on the water with this Memorial Day cruise on the Songo River Queen II. 

Veterans or Active Service men or women, and their immediate family get on for free.

The cruise goes from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. 

Click here for more information

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Explore Martha's Vineyard

Hop the ferry and check out all Martha's Vineyard has to offer before the summer crush.

Cycling, hiking, golf, fishing, and boating are all available on the island.

Click here for more information

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Wool Days at Old Sturbridge Village 

Sturbridge, MA

Attendees will learn how New Englanders reared sheep for their wool in the 1830s and watch experts show off the sheep herding skills of border collies. 

Visitors can go on a garden tour to learn more about plants used to produce these natural colors. Costumed historians demonstrate spinning and weaving to show how early residents used will to make clothing and household textiles. 

Click here for more information 

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Take a Segway Tour Around Boston 

Boston, MA

Taxi's, trains, cars, bikes, and walking are all ways to get around the city of Boston. But, how about taking Segway from Boston Segway Tours. 

A 1-hour tour cost $60 while a two-hour tour will cost you $90, but you will see Boston in a different way then ever before. 

Or, you could rent a segway for a half or full day if you wanted to tour around on your own. 

Boston Segway tours is located at 364 Boylston street.

For more information, click here. 

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See the Site of Paul Revere's Midnight Ride

Boston, MA

Old North Church, located on Salem Street, is Boston's oldest surviving church, and it's also the place where Paul Revere gave the signal that the "British were coming," on April 18, 1775.

Once he gave the signal, two lanterns were raised high, meaning that they were coming by sea to Lexington and Concord, not land. 

This event began the American Revolution. 

For more information, click here. 

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Visit the Tombs of John Adams and John Quincy Adams 

Quincy, MA

Head to Quincy, Massachusetts and visit the United First Parish church, located on 1306 Hancock street.

The church offers the opportunity to visit the final resting places of John Adams and John Quincy Adams. Venture down into the crypt and touch the tombs. 

Click here for more information 

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U.S. Navy Submarine Force Museum and USS Nautilus 

Groten, Connecticut 

See a replica of the world's first submarine and learn about it through films before stepping aboard the USS Nautilus for a free audio tour. 

Nautilus was the first nuclear powered submarine and the first vessel to travel 20,000 leagues under the sea.

The ship is now open to the public year round and is free.  

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The Sprinkler Factory

Worcester, MA

The Sprinkler Factory is not actually factory, but rather a gallery. Though, its namesake does come from the real-life sprinkler factory started by Howard Freeman in WWII. Why? Because he embodies “the spirit of innovation.” With the aim of providing the public with a place to display and enjoy the visual arts, the Sprinkler Factory hosts exhibitions once a month, and they’re always free.

Click here for more information 


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