Letter to the Editor: Thank You from the Bedford Minuteman Company Reunion Committee

Submitted by the Minuteman Reunion Committee, and Jeannette Pothier

BMMC50thThe Reunion path was lit by luminaries as past and present members of the company, walked down and into the Old Town Hall.  Every member of the current company who was there learned of the colorful and historic role the Company has led over the past 50 years.  The Company’s rich history came alive and we hope to pass it on for generaations to come.

The Company was envisioned by four Lexington Minutemen who lived in Bedford.  The Bedford selectmen reactivated the Company in 1964 on September 23, Bedford’s birthday.  Last year at the Ecumenical Service just before Thanksgiving Jeannette Pothier and Rick Manley asked Paul Ciaccia to help with the Reunion, and the committee worked tirelessly to make it happen.

The Company marched in to Battle Hymn, and more music followed.  Roy Kring, the 40th captain took the podium and introduced Ken Gordon, Massachusetts State Rep, the selectmen: Mike Rosenberg, Bill Moonan and Margot Fleischman, the Company’s honorary commander.  There were 12 past captains in attendance, and a reading of all those who are now deceased was read by Chuck Hacala.

A large Bedford flag, framed by Bud Koor at Great Road Gallery was given to the Town of Bedford by the Bedford Minuteman Scholarship Fund to the Company.  Margot accepted the flag and thanked the Company.

Dinner by the Prince Street Café of Bedford followed, and Happy Birthday was sung to John Filios who turns 98 this week.  John was captain 1978-79.  The cake, also by Prince Street Café, was the most beautiful “real” flag look on a cake in frosting, and was cut by Ted Houston now from  Boscawen, NH,  (Captain in 1972-1973) along with David Reader , now from Hawaii, (Captain in 1977-1978).

Past Captains books were on display including the first year in pictures and stories by Bob Biggio, and we were happy that his wife Mary and daughter Robin were in attendance.

Stories and pictures from the past were brought to life on a big screen, by Ann (Ahearn) Ringwood and her husband, Jim, a current minuteman.  An interview of Roger Thurrell, a member in the early years of the company, by Leslie Wittman told of the struggle to raise funds for the Company with medals, and then T-shirts.  They met President Ford in Concord, President Nixon and later Queen Elizabeth on her visit to Boston.  The Company raised money to have the Bedford Flag reproduced thread by thread, and told of who they gave the flags to.  The first reproduction was given to the Bedford Public Library. One of those flags remains in the possession of the company.

We thank all those who attended and donated raffle items.  The Scholarship Fund will again be selling luminaries for the Christmas season.    Our hope is that the company will live on for another 50 years and beyond.

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