CONTRIBUTED BY THE CITY OF OPELIKA
The city of Opelika will host Memorial Day Services on May 29, 2023. The event will honor and remember military heroes who fought for our country’s freedom. And we will show support for the families who lost loved ones in the line of service. Services will be held at Courthouse Square at 10 a.m.
A special lineup this year includes:
• Welcome by Mayor Gary Fuller
• Prayer by Paul Dunbar, Kids Ministry Pastor, First Baptist Church Opelika
• Guest speaker is Army Veteran and City Councilman Todd Rauch
• Presentation of Colors and Laying of the Wreath by Opelika Fire Department and
• Music and TAPS.
Guest Speaker Todd Rauch is a retired United States Army Military Police Officer, and currently serves on the Opelika City Council, representing Ward 5. While serving in the Army, Rauch was named Soldier of the Year for the 18th Military Police Brigade in Giessen, Germany. During his subsequent deployment to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Rauch was awarded the Purple Heart after surviving a mortar attack and helping to save the lives of his fellow soldiers, on Aug. 21, 2003. He suffered extreme trauma and wounds to his right hand and shoulder, and a gunshot wound to his right leg. While at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington D.C., Rauch served as a spokesperson and advocate for wounded Veteran programs like “Coalition Salute America’s Heroes” and “Help Hospitalized Veterans,” which provide resources, programs and therapeutic care for wounded service members returning from combat. Following his return to the States, Rauch was medically retired from the Army and earned his associate degree in psychology from Lake Land College, in Mattoon Ill., where he served as the student representative to the Board of Trustees. He earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology from Auburn University in 2010, and has since worked with U.S. Army’s Aviation & Missile Command as an intelligence specialist, before moving back to Opelika where he began his time in non-profits and public service. Rauch is married to Ali Rauch, where they and their dog Forrest proudly call Opelika home.
Following the Memorial Day services, the Museum of East Alabama will host a reception for the public to share the extraordinary memorabilia of Opelika’s history.
In case of rain, the 10 a.m. services will be moved to the Municipal Court Building at 300 Martin Luther King Blvd.
Memorial Day Week Garbage Schedules: Garbage routes will run one day later than normal.