November 6, 2017

City of Chicago Honors Our Veterans at Soldier Field Ceremony

On November 11, the Honorable Ryan D. McCarthy, Acting Secretary of the Army, will deliver the keynote address and the West Point Glee Club will perform patriotic music

Mary May    312.744.0576,


Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events with honor local and national veterans at this year’s Veterans Day Ceremony, which will be held at Soldier Field, Gate 0, on Saturday, November 11, at 11am. The ceremony will include a speaking program with a keynote address by The Honorable Ryan D. McCarthy, Acting Secretary of the Army, along with participants representing each branch of the United States military and the West Point Glee Club.

“I am proud to celebrate the brave men and women who serve our country and put themselves in harm’s way for our freedom,” said Mayor Emanuel. “While their service can never be repaid, we can honor the courage and sacrifice of our Veterans and the selflessness of their families.”

Chicago native Ryan D. McCarthy is currently serving as the Acting Secretary of the Army with statutory responsibilities that include 1.4 million Soldiers, Department of the Army Civilians, Reserve affairs, installations, environmental issues, weapons systems and equipment acquisition, communication and financial management, while taking care of Army Families and Soldiers for Life. McCarthy proudly served in the U.S. Army from 1997 to 2002 and was involved in combat operations in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom with the 75th Ranger Regiment, U.S. Special Operations Command. Before attending the Virginia Military Institute, he grew up in Glenview, Illinois, where much of his family still presides.

The West Point Glee Club, one of the U.S. Military Academy’s most visible cadet organizations, will perform at the ceremony. For over one hundred years, its members have touched audiences around the world with a model depiction of the Corps of Cadets through live performance in the nation’s finest concert halls, national network and feature film appearances, and recordings. The Glee Club enhances life at West Point through its traditional ceremonial duties and represents West Point and the U.S. Army at official events.

The ceremony will once again take place in front of the Doughboy statue. The nearby benches for moments of reflectioncontain notable quotations about service to country and actual Armed Forces Medals of Honor cast into the backrests. The program will culminate with a wreath laying ceremony at the Doughboy, a 21-gun salute, “Taps” and the “Armed Forces Medley.”

Soldier Field was named as such at the request of the Gold Star Mothers to honor the men lost in World War I. The Doughboy statue, originally placed in Garfield Park, was restored and installed in Soldier Field as part of the stadium renovation. Doughboy is an informal term for a member of the United States Army of Marine Corps, especially members of the American Expeditionary Forces in World War I.

Veterans Day is set aside to thank and honor living veterans who have served honorably in the military in wartime and peacetime. Originally known as Armistice Day and so declared by President Woodrow Wilson, it was created to mark the signing of the Armistice which ended World War I.  Following World War II, it was declared a day to honor all veterans and in 1954, renamed Veterans Day by Congress.

FREE public parking is available at the Waldron Parking Deck; exit at 18th Street from Lake Shore Drive. For information on all programs presented by the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, visit our website at and join us on Facebook and Twitter @ChicagoDCASE.

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Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events

The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) is dedicated to enriching Chicago’s artistic vitality and cultural vibrancy. This includes fostering the development of Chicago’s non-profit arts sector, independent working artists and for-profit arts businesses; providing a framework to guide the City’s future cultural and economic growth, via the 2012 Chicago Cultural Plan; marketing the City’s cultural assets to a worldwide audience; and presenting high-quality, free and affordable cultural programs for residents and visitors.

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