BOSTON–India Association of Greater Boston, known as IAGB, held a virtual Memorial Day Celebration, honoring fallen heroes.
“In an unprecedented time, a unique thinking has to happen to continue honor those who gave their all to let us enjoy the fruits of freedom and pursue our goals of happiness,” IAGB President Sanjay Gowda said in a statement. “And as IAGB and our New England region took a day to memorialize our fallen heroes, those who are living and facing a deadly risk, i.e. coronavirus, were also remembered and shared a thought with.”
In a first ever virtual Memorial Day celebration, IAGB commemorated the 2020 Memorial Day, with fitting tributes from war veterans, state legislators from all over New England, covid survivors and front-line doctors.
The event took place on Monday, May 25th, 2020. The day started with honoring the ultimate sacrifices of the many fallen heroes who died while serving in the US military forces and in line within a true tradition of visiting memorials and cemeteries (virtual) and having family gatherings to remember these soldiers.
The responsibility of being grand marshal for this virtual parade was taken by NH house speaker Steve Shurtleff. This was followed by New England legislators sharing their messages with community, starting with Congressman Mr. Chris Pappas, MA State Senator Mr Jamie Eldridge, Nashua Mayor Mr Jim Donchess, Deputy Speaker Ms Karen Ebel, State Rep Ms Latha Mangipudi, MA state reps Ms Kay Khan and Mr Tackey Chan, Ex State Reps from VT Ms Kesha Ram, Ex state rep and current congressional primary candidate of RI, Mr Bob Lancia, MA community leader Mr Nam Pham & Ex-congressman Paul Hodge. NH Congresswoman Annie Kuster sent her tribute via pre-recorded video.
The speakers spoke of intense personal experiences and talked about how these sacrifices have given us the freedom and the way of life that we enjoy today. Speakers also urged people to remember on a daily basis the ultimate sacrifice given by our heroes.
“In a year where we lost 93 veterans to COVID in HOLYOKE, Massachusetts, dedicated time was given to share experiences of COVID survivors and front-line doctors fighting this ongoing battle,” Mr. Gowda said. “IAGB’s very own, past president Mr Anil Saigal, shared his own experience of a successful battle that he had to take against coronavirus. Dr Charudutt Paranjape & Dr Rekha Bhandari shared their own experiences of fighting this virus from front lines and offered advice to veterans and senior citizens.”
In this time of being “Alone Together”, more than 50 people, including many veterans and ex IAGB officers, joined this virtual parade on ZOOM and session was viewed by more than 3,400 people across all of New England area.
“So take the time, not just on Memorial Day but every day, and take a moment to say thank you to our fallen heroes. For those who never left the battlefields, we must hold them up in our heart and honor their memories,” said Mr. Gowda.