Memorial Day Ceremony: 5 O’Clock Thursday

Students hold the Golden Memory Book at UC Davis.
Army ROTC cadets hold the Golden Memory Book, which contains the names of all 135 Aggies who have died in military service. (Gregory Urquiaga/UC Davis)

Quick Summary

  • Remembering our 135 fallen Aggies
  • Their names will be read, taps will be played
  • Army veteran and law student to give keynote

Army veteran and law school student Nick Chase, in his keynote address Thursday (May 26) at UC Davis’ annual Memorial Day Ceremony, will relate some of the moving stories from the university’s Golden Memory Book of fallen Aggies and tell a moving story of his own, from when he was a young officer in Afghanistan.

The ceremony, open to all, runs from 5 to 5:30 p.m. on the South Patio of the Memorial Union — a building that stands in tribute to our fallen Aggies. A reception will follow in the Coffeehouse.

The program includes UC Davis' Army ROTC color guard, the Pledge of Allegiance and the national anthem, a wreath presentation and the reading of the names of the 135 Aggies who have died in military service: seven from World War I, 111 from World War II, three from Korea, four from Vietnam and one from Iraq, eight during peacetime, and one who died under unknown circumstances.

Each of those casualties has a page in the Golden Memory Book, each page a story of a promising student or alum and his service history and commendations, all but one of the pages produced on typewriters (the newest page, for the Aggie who died in Iraq, was digitally produced). The book will be on display during the reception; UC Davis Navy ROTC midshipmen will stand sentry. You can also see the Golden Memory Book online.

Chase earned a bachelor's degree in political science from UC Santa Cruz in 2010, then spent five years in the Army. He enrolled in the UC Davis School of Law last fall and serves as president of the Davis Student Veteran Organization. That organization and the Veteran Constituency Group (for faculty, staff and students and staff), joined by ROTC cadets, will put up a flag display on the Quad in advance of Thursday’s ceremony — 135 flags, one for each fallen Aggie.

The ceremony will close with taps after the reading of the names.

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