Friday, November 18, 2011

V.A. Center for Aging Memorial Celebration

I provided patriotic music for the V.A. Pacific Islands Health Care System Center for Aging this morning. This is the thirteenth year where they honor those who went through the Center for services and have recently passed away in the immediate past 12 months.

Looking like a peacock... wind was a factor. Messed up my increasingly sparse head of hair and I had to place the piano lower than I wanted to. Didn't want the wind to blow everything over.
Marty Parmelee, the Mistress of Ceremonies introduced Kumu Pomai Tenn to do the opening chant. He also did the closing chant.
 The color guard posted the colors.....
The Air Force sent a singer to sing the National Anthem and Hawaii Ponoi. That's the Air Force's new dress uniform for bands and special services.

The chaplain at the Center, Reverend Charles Card gave the opening prayer.

Mrs. Wanda Ulmer, who lost her husband  about two years ago, sang a Song of Aloha. She is very grateful for the services that the Center provided because she attests that she would not have been able to care for her husband after his stroke.
 Wanda would like to do more as a volunteer so I invited her to share her voice every Monday when I entertain there. I encourage anyone who has a hobby, skill, talent or just the time, to find some way to volunteer. If you teach them photography, for example, you have not only helped them to enhance their artistic skills, but also provided a therapeutic activity, engaging them mentally, physically and emotionally. Can be done at any nursing facility.
Nurses Janelle Ando and Devera Chun read off the roll call. As each name was read, Cecil Meadows rang a bell.
As each name was read, a family member placed a flag on the alter. Many of these veterans don't have family members here so staff members placed the flags in their honor. Each of the deceaseds received a salute from the honor guards as their names were called.
 The guy that made everyone sound good. For musicians, good sound men are worth their weight in gold. In this case, Tate is a nutritionist was outranked by the Doc, whose sound equipment we use every year. For an outdoor setting, he made me sound decent (vs. indecent, I suppose).
The staff at the Center always want to contribute something to the celebration of these soldiers. Today, they sang and danced to Aloha Oe. These folks have so much love and aloha for those placed in their care.
Closing remarks by the Medical Director, Dr. James Epure.
Kumu Pomai Tenn gave the closing chant and the color guards posted themselves while the bugler from the Marine Corp played Taps.

To all who took an oath to defend the Consitution of the United States seriously, even at the risk of life and limb, I salute you all.