Massing of the Colors in Old Town honors service.

This morning a unique ceremony was held in San Diego. The 66th Massing of the Colors and Service of Remembrance honored the flag of our country and those who’ve served to protect it–and the Freedom it represents.

The annual Massing of the Colors is presented by the San Diego Chapter of The Military Order of the World Wars. The organization is made up of officers from the uniformed services, their spouses and descendants.

This year about 25 color guards from all around the city came together for the ceremony at the U.S. Army of the West Mormon Battalion Historic Site, which is located in Old Town. The MCRD Marine Band provided patriotic music.

I watched as the many color guards arrived, streaming in from nearby parking lots and down sidewalks. There were youth belonging to the ROTC and Junior ROTC programs. There were proud Veterans who’d fought for their country. There were descendants of those who’d served.

Before the ceremony began, the color guards paraded single file through the grassy area where the audience would watch, forming a line of flags to one side. Then several color guards brought more flags forward before an Invocation, Pledge of Allegiance, and singing of the National Anthem. Coming to the podium, Anaeya Baez, from Girl Scout Troop 6116, read My Name is Old Glory.

A guest speaker, the Honorable M. Janet Chin, reminded everyone of the sacrifices many have made. She expressed hope that present and future generations will remember that history, and will continue the tradition of service.

The motto of the Military Order of the World Wars is: It is nobler to serve than to be served.

The ceremony ended with Taps, a Benediction, and the Retiring of the Colors.

As you can see in the following photographs, I arrived and took my seat very early…

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Memorial Day ceremony to be held in National City.

National City will be hosting a Memorial Day ceremony tomorrow, May 30, 2022. The event will honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice while serving in our nation’s armed forces.

The ceremony will be held at 4 pm in front of the War Memorial and Veterans Wall of Honor, which is located at 12th Street and D Avenue, at the northeast corner of Kimball Park.

I noticed other San Diego websites failed to list this important Memorial Day event, so I thought I’d mention it here. Spread the word.

I plan to take the day off and simply rest. Perhaps write a little. I’m not getting any younger.

Believe me, I’m grateful to live in a free country. And I want to thank those who have sacrificed to defend freedom.

I attended the National City Memorial Day ceremony last year, and posted many moving photographs of it here.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Sunflowers in Escondido help Ukrainian refugees!

An effort is underway in Escondido to help refugees who’ve fled Ukraine during the Russian invasion.

I saw numerous beautiful paintings of sunflowers on display at the 2022 Escondido Street Festival today. Sunflowers are the national flower of Ukraine.

The bright, optimistic paintings were created by artists who belong to the Escondido Art Association. Their project is called Sunflowers for Ukraine. Purchases and donations go to World Central Kitchen, which is feeding displaced Ukrainians.

Want to learn more?

Visit the Escondido Art Association’s website by clicking here! They’ve already raised ten thousand dollars!

Feeling inspired by this project? But you don’t live in Escondido? Certainly there are many artists who can paint sunflowers where you live! You can grow sunflowers like these, too!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Would you like to read a happy short story about sunflowers and spreading kindness? Then click here!

War Memorial at San Diego State University.

A War Memorial stands at San Diego State University. It remembers SDSU alumni who fought and died for their country.

The tall monument is located in Aztec Center Green, north of the SDSU Transit Center, west of the Aztec Student Union building.

Those who approach the War Memorial can read the names of students from several generations.

Many fought in World War II. Others fought in Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq.

WAR MEMORIAL

PLANNED BY A SELECT PRE-50s ALUMNI COMMITTEE

DEDICATED ON NOVEMBER 23, 1996

ARTIST: JESS DOMINGUEZ

IN MEMORY OF OUR CLASSMATES WHOSE LIVES WERE TAKEN FROM US DURING OUR NATION’S MILITARY CONFLICTS

THIS WAR MEMORIAL’S JAGGED EDGES SYMBOLIZE THE SHATTERED LIVES OF OUR AZTEC HEROES AND CLASSMATES LOST SELFLESSLY IN SERVICE TO OUR COUNTRY.

WE SALUTE AND HONOR THEM.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Standing with Ukraine in San Diego.

I walked a little through downtown San Diego this morning and this evening. And the first thing I photographed was the above sign We Stand With Ukraine.

Later, I’d see other instances of San Diego businesses and residents standing in solidarity with the Ukrainians, who have been suffering for a month now during the brutal Russian invasion orchestrated by Putin.

The civilized world has been watching the shocking events in Ukraine with horror and great sadness.

May reason, compassion, and human liberty prevail.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

War and freedom in Solana Beach.

World events are showing us once again that war is hell. And that freedom is precious.

Earlier this year, I took these photographs in Solana Beach of the war memorial at the corner of Highway 101 and Plaza Street/Lomas Santa Fe Drive. Plaques honor local residents who fought in World War II and the Vietnam War.

I performed a search to learn more about this memorial, but a Waymarking link to an old North County Times article concerning its creation is broken. Apparently the memorial was dedicated on March 26, 2009.

Beneath the plaques are the bold words FREEDOM IS NOT FREE.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

San Diegans rally in support of Ukraine.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine is being widely condemned by civilized, peace-loving people around the world.

Today a rally was held in San Diego’s Balboa Park, before the El Cid statue, in support of Ukraine.

Flags waved and urgent words were spoken, including Stop the War and Help Ukraine. Signs were held high for eyes and cameras to see.

As a surprise beginning to the 2 o’clock Spreckels Organ concert, Ukraine’s national anthem was played. Much applause could be heard from the audience.

At the House of Ukraine among the International Cottages, additional words of support were spoken by concerned visitors.

May this war end very soon.

And may Humanity prevail.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

A new Peace Pole comes to Balboa Park.

A hopeful new Peace Pole has been installed in Balboa Park near the House of Pacific Relations International Cottages.

The Peace Pole, which contains the message “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in many languages, is the project of Rotary E-Club of San Diego Global, San Diego Downtown Breakfast Rotary Club and the international Peace Pole Project.

I saw the unique yellow signpost for the first time early this morning during a walk through Balboa Park.

I stumbled upon a similar pole a couple years ago during a walk through Rotary Lane in Vista, California. See that one here.

This new Peace Pole has debuted just as war in Ukraine gets underway.

I don’t know whether the hope for enduring world peace is vain, given various aspects of human nature and the resulting conflicts. But if we don’t hope for peace, and desire peace, and make peace, and treat each other kindly, then there is no hope for humanity.

I choose to hope.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Pacific Beach memorial for Kabul attack victims.

I saw this memorial today as I walked along the Pacific Beach boardwalk.

Thirteen flags had been planted nearby in the sand, to honor and remember the thirteen United States service members who died during the attack on Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, almost two weeks ago.

Some people walking or biking through the sunshine stopped, to quietly gaze at the flags, flowers, and scattered objects of remembrance.

I don’t know who created this simple but moving tribute.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera. You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter.

Heroes honored at Chula Vista’s Memorial Monument.

The Memorial Monument stands near the center of Chula Vista’s Memorial Park. It lists the names of honored heroes.

According to bronze plaques, bookending names engraved in marble, the monument is…

DEDICATED TO THE MEMORY OF CHULA VISTA (AND SOUTH BAY) HEROES OF ALL WARS WHO SO GALLANTLY FOUGHT TO PRESERVE OUR AMERICAN HERITAGE THAT

GOVERNMENT OF THE PEOPLE BY THE PEOPLE FOR THE PEOPLE SHALL NOT PERISH FROM THE EARTH

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!