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Turlock prepares to honor its fallen veterans
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Memorial Day services will be held at 9:30 a.m. Monday at Turlock Memorial Park. - photo by Journal file photo

Those driving through Turlock Memorial Park this weekend will have no doubt that Turlock remembers the men and women who died in service of their country. Every Memorial Day, the Turlock cemetery turns into an Avenue of Flags, with thousands of stars and stripes flying in remembrance of the local veterans buried there and elsewhere.

Turlock Memorial Park Assistant Manager Lonnie Alvares said the cemetery puts out 800 full size flags and 4 to 5,000 small flags — with the help of local Boy Scouts — for the Memorial Day holiday.

"I've been here 22 years and it's the biggest event we have throughout the year. It's a very special day to honor all the veterans and show them our thanks," said Alvares.

This will be the 53rd anniversary of the Avenue of Flags at Turlock Memorial Park, with many new flags flying this year thanks to the Adopt a Flag program. Over 100 torn and battered flags were replaced thanks to donations from the community over the past two years.

This year's Memorial Day services will start with a prelude performed by the Hilmar Community Band at 9:30 a.m. and ceremonies starting at 10 a.m. Monday. The event will honor those military personnel from every branch of the United States armed forces who gave their lives in time of war. Members of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars and Disabled American Veterans will be a part of the service.

Turlock Mayor Gary Soiseth is scheduled to attend the event and Admiral Mike Seward of the U.S. Coast Guard will be the featured speaker.

Turlock Memorial Park is located at 425 N. Soderquist Rd., Turlock.