Veterans Day LA

LA Gears Up For Three-Day Veterans Day Weekend
with Veterans for Peace
Friday, November 11th - Sunday, November 13th

WHERE: Arlington West Memorial, North of the Santa Monica Pier on the Beach (Near Santa Monica Fwy. and Pacific Coast Hwy.)

WHY: To commemorate the veterans of all U.S. wars particularly as Death Toll for US Troops Killed in Iraq Rises to 2,055 to Date.

Contingent of California Gold Star Families to Lead Procession
of 100 Flag-Draped Coffins Through Streets of Santa Monica
Noon on Saturday, November 12th.

Call for 400 Volunteer Pallbearers (if you are interested in volunteering in this procession, please contact Tonia Young at Topanga Peace Alliance/Arlington West, Veterans Day Weekend Coordinator
310-455-2688 /

WHO: Six California Gold Star Families (with members who were killed in Iraq), U. S. Veterans from Iraq, Persian Gulf War, Vietnam, Korea and WWll, The Interfaith Community, celebrities and local public officials will lead the respectful procession.  Families will carry large photos of their beloved husbands, sons, siblings and boyfriends, who were killed in the Iraq War.

PROCESSION ROUTE:  Leaving from Santa Monica Pier, going North through Palisades Park, along Ocean Ave.  In the Palisades Park, veterans will lay 4 wreaths at the Veterans Monument.  Then the coffin procession will head East toward the Third Street Promenade, and South back to the pier.

Arlington West Santa Monica Veterans Day Weekend: 
Friday, November 11th - Sunday, November 13th.

WHERE:  All events listed below are located at Arlington West, Santa Monica Beach, unless otherwise designated.


7:30AM--The memorial of over 2,050 crosses will be erected.
Congresswoman Maxine Waters is planning to participate.
Former U. S. Diplomat Ann Wright will assist with set up and be available for interviews.

1:00 PM--Speakers will read the names of the soldiers killed at the top of each hour.  A gong will sound as each name is read aloud.

WHO: Kevin McKeown, Santa Monica City Council Member

Abdul Henderson, Iraq War Veteran, Marine Corporal, featured in Michael Moore's film Fahrenheit 9/11

Tim Goodrich, Iraq and Afghanistan War Veteran, Air Force

Shakeel Syed, Islamic Shura Council of So. Cal. will read scriptures from the Koran and lead memorial prayers.

Bill Mitchell, Vietnam Veteran and father of Army Sgt. Michael Mitchell, 25, of Porterville, CA killed in Sadr City, Baghdad on April 4, 2004 (along with Peace Mom Cindy Sheehan's son Casey.)

Joyce Riley, RN, Gulf War Veteran, served as Captain in U.S. Air Force will speak about Veterans concerns.

Callie Wright, MA, RN, C, Trauma Therapist, will speak about Veterans issues.

4:30 PM: Candlelight vigil ceremony will begin, 1,000 candles will illuminate a field of 2,000 plus crosses and continue burning through the night.

Iraq Vet, Lance Corporal Jeff Key will play taps at dusk.

6:15 PM: Two films will be projected on the wall of the pier: A Line in the Sand and The Ground Truth.


7:30 -11:00 AM: One hundred coffins will be assembled and draped with flags by Volunteers.

NOON--Procession will begin at Arlington West and loop through the streets of Santa Monica, 400 pallbearers will carry 100 flag- draped coffins.

WHO:  California Gold Star Families will lead the march carrying large photos of their beloved husbands and children who were killed in Iraq:

Melanie House will honor her husband:

Navy Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class John D. House, 28, of Ventura, CA, killed Jan. 26 in a helicopter crash near Rutbah, Iraq.

Vickie Castro will honor her son:

Army Spc. Jonathan Castro, 21, of Corona, CA, killed Dec. 21, 2004, when a suicide bomber entered the Mosul mess hall.

Bill Mitchell will honor his son:

Army Sgt. Michael W. Mitchell, 25, of Porterville, CA, killed April 4, 2002 in Sadr City, Iraq.

Joanna Kubik will honor her boyfriend:
Marine Lance Cpl. Shane C. Swanberg, 24, of Kirkland, Washington, killed in an explosion on Sept 15, 2005 at Camp Ramadi, Iraq.

The Berto Figeroa family will honor their son:
Lance Cpl. Luis A. Figueroa, 21, of Los Angeles, CA, killed in action in Al Anbar Province, Iraq, on November 18, 2004

Along with a contingent of Iraq War Veterans and veterans from the Gulf War, Vietnam, Korea, and WWll. Elected officials, veterans, clergy, and the general public are all welcome to join as pallbearers.

12:45 PM--War veterans will lay four wreaths at the Veterans Monument in Palisades Park. Members of the interfaith community will offer prayers of honor and remembrance at the monument.

2:00 PM--Speakers include:

WHO: Ron Kovic, decorated Vietnam Vet and author of 'Born on the 4th of July'

Kevin McKeown, Santa Monica City Council Member.

Melanie House, of Simi Valley, CA, (see above).

Vickie Castro, of Corona, CA, (see above).

Mimi Kennedy, Actress, Author & Activist:  Ms. Kennedy has starred in five seasons of the primetime television comedy, "Dharma & Greg."

4:30 PM--Candlelight vigil will begin.
Iraq Vet Lance Corporal Jeff Key will play taps at dusk.

6:15 PM--Arlington West, the documentary film by Sally Marr and Peter Dudar will be projected on the wall of the pier.


9:30 - 10:00 AM--Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb, Director of Interfaith Inventions, will lead an interfaith Ceremony of Remembrance to commemorate the lives of those who perished and to comfort those who remain.

10:00 - 10:30 AM‹Actor, poet and musician, Stephan Fiske will perform a morning interfaith ceremony with many members of the clergy (including Rev Jim Lawson, Jr.) and interfaith community.

11:00 AM--Screening, Filmmaker Bruce Royer will screen A Line in the Sand , documenting the making of Arlington West Memorial, directed by Leszek Burzynski

WHERE: Laemmle Monica 4-Plex Theatre, 1332 2nd Street, Santa Monica, CA  90401.

WHO: Gold Star Father and Vietnam Vet, Bill Mitchell, and Veterans for Peace members will speak immediately following the screening.

12:30 PM--The theater audience will walk a few blocks south to Arlington West.

2:00 PM--Members of the interfaith community will speak and read names of the soldiers at Arlington West joined by:

WHO: Jane Bright, of West Hills, CA, whose son Army Sgt. Evan Ashcraft was KIA in Mosul, Iraq on July 24, 2003.

4:30 PM--The memorial will be put away until the following Sunday, when it will be resurrected, as it has been displayed every Sunday for the past year and a half.