FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FEBRUARY 25, 2005 CONTACT: Stand for Peace
Scott Burgwin 541 767-0770
Memorial Peace Procession and Related Events planned for Cottage Grove, March 18 and 19, 2005
Cottage Grove, Oregon February 25, 2005
Stand for Peace of south Lane and north Douglas counties announced today their plans for a Memorial Peace Procession on March 19th, 2005, from noon to 2pm. The Peace Procession is scheduled to coincide with the 2nd anniversary of the invasion of Iraq.
Scott Burgwin, Stand for Peace Coordinator, said, "the purpose of the procession is to honor the memory of all people killed in the Iraq War, to support our troops by demanding they be brought home, to call for an end to the U.S. occupation of Iraq, and to recognize our country's responsibility to assist Iraqis in the reconstruction of their country."
"The Cottage Grove Armory is the "hometown" of the largest contingent of Oregon National Guard currently deployed in Iraq. These "citizen soldiers" have been subjected to poor preparation and equipment, extremely hazardous conditions in Iraq, and forced extended tours that have compounded the emotional and financial stress on their families. At least 8 Oregon National Guard have been killed in Iraq. Bringing participants to this peace procession in Cottage Grove appropriately reflects the nature of the National Guard in that the soldiers stationed out of the Cottage Grove Armory are from all over Oregon. Also, small towns in the U.S. are carrying a disproportionate share of the burden of supplying their own as soldiers to this war. Focusing on this burden and standing up for peace in small town Oregon can help highlight the need to bring the troops home."
"The procession will be a peaceful display of respect towards the war's victims, the soldiers who have been called to serve, as well as the community we live in. We will be carrying the names of the fallen soldiers and several hundred Iraqi children on individual "prayer flags" strung together on a continuous cord."
Procession participants will also honor the fallen soldiers by laying wreaths at the Veteran's Memorial at River Road and West Main Street and at the National Guard Armory. The procession will be followed by a brief program with music and speakers.
Other planned events include, a presentation by Physicians for Social Responsibility/Beyond War on the "Health Effects of War and Sane Alternatives to the War on Terror" on Friday night, 6:30- 9pm at the Cottage Grove Community Center, and a community forum on "Responses to Military Recruitment in Our Schools" from 3-5pm on March 19, also at the Community Center.
The route for the approximately mile-long procession will run from its starting point at the Cottage Grove High School parking lot, down South River Road to Main Street, and then following Main Street to Opal's Park at 7th and East Main.
All peace-loving Oregonians are invited to participate.
STAND FOR PEACE P.O. BOX 1482, COTTAGE GROVE, OR 97424 541 767-0770