MICHIGAN CITY — In a city recently named the most patriotic in Indiana, a local youth group is doing its best to uphold that ranking.
A study by Insurify, an auto insurance quotes website, ranked Michigan CIty the most patriotic city in the state based on the number of active service members and veterans living here.
About 7 percent of MC residents are active military or veterans, according to the study, and that gave the city the largest share of such residents in Indiana, according to Insurify.
That point was brought home by the large number of Memorial Day services and events held across the city on Monday, and all the various groups taking part – from two American Legion posts, the DAV and VFW to Girl Scouts and a group of teens who were seemingly all over the place.
While Memorial Day is viewed by many as the traditional start of summer, a time for barbecues and relaxation, cadets from the Michigan City High School Marine Corps Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps supported the “true meaning of the day,” according to Major Thomas McGrath, senior Marine instructor at MCHS.
The cadets not only marched in the Memorial Day Parade, but were active participants in the ceremony at Greenwood Cemetery, McGrath said.
Earlier in the day, the cadets assisted veterans groups in placing flags on all veterans’ graves in Greenwood Cemetery; and supported veteran’s motorcycle groups in their ceremony at the Danny Bruce Memorial in Washington Park.
“Our cadets realize the solemnity of this day, what it means to families who have lost loved ones in the defense of freedom,” McGrath said.
Marine Instructor Master Sgt. Jeff Benak complimented the dedication of the cadets.
“It would be easy for our cadets to do what most of their peers are doing today – sleeping in and then relaxing. But they realize that many have sacrificed for us to enjoy all of the opportunities this country provides for them.”
In addition to the Memorial Day parade and ceremony, the cadets recently participated in other community service events, including festivities at Pine and Lake Hills elementary schools, and Baker Middle School; the Veterans of Foreign Wars poppy sale, and the dedication of the Richardson Nature Preserve in La Porte.
The MCJROTC will be conducting its summer leadership camp at St. John’s Northwestern Military Camp in Delafield, Wisconsin, from June 3-7. Upon returning, they will support the MCHS graduation on June 9, the Michigan City Kiddie Parade on June 22, the Michigan City Summer Festival Parade on June 29, and the La Porte Independence Day Parade on July 4.
According to Insurify’s study, only Anderson and Richmond in Indiana have a similar share of military citizens as Michigan City.
Nationwide, the study showed about 1 million active military members, about 800,000 reservists, and 18 million veterans across the nation. The study used the company’s database of car insurance applications, which include a question on military service.