WWII Commemoration 2013

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ORCHARD LAKE, MI — The Polish Mission is honored to present its annual event commemorating the Invasion of Poland in 1939. This event is offered in cooperation with the Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum, and is presented with the generous support of the United States Army, the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), and the Historic Fort Wayne Coalition. Admission is free, and all are welcome at one of Orchard Lake Schools’ most time-honored traditions. Polish veterans in attendance will be distinguished guests of honor.

All active and former servicemen and women are especially invited, to be formally recognized for their service, and to join us in saluting those who fought for Poland from 1939-1945.

For the first time in over 60 years, a selection of The Polish Mission’s collection of historic ceremonial flags will be temporarily removed from conservation, to participate in a Veterans’ Parade led by a detachment of the United States Army. The parade will conclude with an expanded re-dedication ceremony at the first monument in North America erected in honor of the victims of both the Katyń forest massacre of 1940, and the 2010 tragedy at Smolensk.  An original pre-1939 European artillery piece will participate in the ceremony.

THE EVENT — Attendees are welcome to attend free genealogical workshops on American and Polish military records, as well as a special lecture by Michigan author and military historian, Kenneth Koskodan, who was awarded the Knight’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland for his book, No Greater Ally.

The Art Galeria will present a show highlighting Poland at war, featuring a special display created by the Polish government-in-exile, last displayed in New York in the 1940s. In addition, original works of art created by Auschwitz survivor Jan Komski will be available for viewing alongside signature artwork from The Polish Mission’s collection.

ABOUT THE BEGINNING OF WWII — Poland was the first nation to fight against Nazi Germany, when it was subjected to the barbaric surprise invasion of 1939. The Polish military and civilians defended Poland against overwhelming Nazi German and Soviet armies until October 6th. From 1939-45, Polish soldiers went on to fight alongside the United States Military and its allies, on all fronts of the European theater of WWII.

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