Editor’s Note—The following letter to the editor is a schedule of activities at the American Cemetery in Italy that is the final resting place for Ellen Ainsworth. She was a Glenwood City resident and served as an the Army nurse during World War II and died in Italy as the result of hostile action. She was the only Wisconsin woman to perish from battlefield action.
Good Morning Ladies & Gentlemen,
For those of you who do not know me, I’m Tina Young the Superintendent of Sicily Rome American Cemetery in Nettuno, Italy. As family members or friends of loved ones buried or memorialized here in our cemetery, I wanted to extend a personal invitation to our Visitor Center opening on Monday, 26 May 2014.
As some of you may be aware, we have been building a new Visitor Center on the memorial/ cemetery grounds which is almost complete. The exhibit will include a WW II timelinefocusing on the Italian campaign, as well as photographs and artifacts throughout the exhibit and more importantly, a series of panels highlighting the stories of some of the men and women buried or memorialized in our cemetery. If you are familiar with the Visitor Center ABMC built in Normandy, the one here in Nettuno is essentially is the same design but a bit smaller in size.
I know some of you have already told me that you are planning to attend the opening ceremony but those of you who are not aware, I wanted to pass along some information should you be planning or considering attending. The dedication of the Visitor Center will be the same day as our Memorial Day ceremony and the schedule as we have coordinated with the US Embassy is as follows:
26 May 2014:
Visitor Center Ribbon Cutting & Memorial Day ceremony:
We’re going to have an official opening with limited numbers of attendees and will have both the Ambassador and one of our ABMC Commissioners Mr. Dorgan cutting the ribbon. Also, attending will be families of Next of Kin (NOK) and we hope some of you can join us as well. The ribbon cutting will be at 0930 on Memorial Day, a couple hours before the MD ceremony.
• 0930-1000: Small Ribbon Cutting by Ambassador & Commissioner Dorgan, veterans and Next of Kin (NOK ) families, which would include any of you of course! We will also invite the Mayors from the beachhead cities (Anzio, Nettuno, Cisterna, Latina & Aprilia) and perhaps other VIPs.
• 1000-1045: Vets/NOK families and VIPs can tour the VC after the ribbon cutting and have coffee & pastries in old Visitor Bldg
• 1100-1200—Memorial Day ceremony—this part of the ceremony is generally one hour in length and will include a speech by the Ambassador, an Italian Ministry of Defense rep, a US General or Admiral (usually the 6th Fleet/NAVEUR Admiral). The ceremony will have an honor guard from both the US and Italy as well as a bands from both nations.
Please let me know if you are planning to attend or if you travels take you here to Italy in the future.
All the best,
Tina Young, Superintendent
Sicily-Rome American Cemetery