By Barbara Scott
A Memorial Day program will be held at the Northern Maine Veterans’ Cemetery in Caribou on Monday, May 28 beginning at 1 p.m.
According to Harry Hafford, chairman of the NMVC Corporation, this year’s keynote speaker will be Brigadier General John Levasseur, U.S. Army, Ret.
Retiring 2011, after more than 39 years of military service, Levasseur, a St. John Valley native, began his military career in 1971, enlisting in the 152nd Field Artillery Maine National Guard (Caribou). Following his completion of Officer Candidate School at the Massachusetts Military Academy, he was commissioned in 1973 with assignments that included Armor Platoon leader, Mass. National Guard; executive officer of an Artillery Battery in Mississippi National Guard; Army Reserve transportation computer information management; vessel chief and ship’s officer at military traffic movement command; battalion commander of 1174th Transportation Terminal Unit; assistant deputy chief of staff — operations, 77th Regional Support Command; and brigade commander of the 1179th Deployment Support Brigade of Fort Hamilton, N.Y.
Promoted to Brigadier General in 1999 Lavasseur served as reserve mobilization director through the Defense Logistic Agency at Fort Belvoir, Va. and with the U.S. Transportation command as director of the Deployment and Distribution Operations Center.
Levasseur’s last active duty assignment was as director for the U.S. Central Command’s Deployment and Distribution Operation Center in Kuwait, Iraq and Afghanistan support Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
A graduate of the University of Maine electrical engineering technology program, the retired veteran is also a graduate of Mississippi State University and holds MBAs in global business from Penn State University; executive management from George Washington University and strategic studies U. S. Army War College.
Also retired from 37 years of service with the Bell System and AT&T, Levasseur and his wife Linda currently reside in Fredericksburg, Va.
The May 28 program will also include remarks from Hafford, Sharon Campbell, representing U.S. Sen. Olympia Snowe; Phil Bosse, state office representative for U.S. Sen. Susan Collins and district representative for U. S. Congressman Michael Michaud, Barbara Hayslett.
The Loring Job Corps Honor Guard, under the direction of Sgt. Major Roger Felix will present the U.S. colors. Hafford and Brig.Gen. Lavasseur will place the Memorial Wreath. A 21-gun salute provided by members of the Madawaska American Legion Post 147, will be followed by the presentation of TAPS, by Fred Ormezzani, member of the NMVC committee.
Everyone is invited to attend this Memorial Day program. The Northern Maine Veterans’ Cemetery is located at 37 Lombard Road in Caribou.