Archdiocese Local

Catholic Cemeteries to host Veterans Day observances

Blessed in November 2021, the Veterans Garden and Memorial at Mt. Calvary Cemetery in  Topeka has drawn extensive community interest. The centerpiece of this new Veterans Garden is a replica of the Marine Corps Memorial statue of the raising of the U.S. flag at Iwo Jima. Enhancing this lasting and powerful image are rows of individual graves that are marked with simple, white headstones in the style of Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. COURTESY PHOTO

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — In tribute to veterans — living and deceased — Catholic Cemeteries of Northeast Kansas will host special ceremonies on Nov. 11 at two locations. The Veterans Day observances are scheduled at Mt. Calvary Cemetery, Topeka, and at Resurrection Cemetery, Lenexa.

Mt. Calvary Cemetery, Topeka

At Mt. Calvary Cemetery, located at 801 S.W. Westchester Rd. in Topeka, the American Legion Band will perform a prelude of patriotic music, starting at 9 a.m. The program will begin at 9:30 a.m. in Holy Trinity Mausoleum Chapel with a welcome by Sharon Vallejo, president of Catholic Cemeteries. Father Tim Haberkorn, pastor of Sacred Heart-St. Joseph Parish, Topeka, will offer the invocation. The presentation of colors by the Topeka Police Department Honor Guard and Pipes and Drums Band will follow. Sergeant Jayme Green, Topeka Police Department, will sing the national anthem. Anthems honoring the five branches of the Armed Forces will be performed by the American Legion Band.

A featured speaker will make remarks, and guests will be invited to join in a prayer for veterans. Three volleys followed by “Taps” played by members of American Legion Post 421 will close the program.

Resurrection Cemetery, Lenexa

Starting at 1:30 p.m. at Resurrection Cemetery, located at 83rd and Quivira Rd. in Lenexa, patriotic music by the American Legion Band will precede the program. The 2 p.m. program in Prince of Peace Mausoleum Chapel will begin with a welcome by Vallejo. Father Michael Hermes, pastor of St. Paul Parish, Olathe, will offer the invocation. The Lenexa Police Department Honor Guard will present the colors. Victoria Irvin, civilian employee of the Lenexa Police Department, will sing the national anthem. The American Legion Band will perform the service songs of the various branches of the military. 

Arthur Fillmore II, attorney, decorated veteran and chairman of the Kansas City Vietnam Veterans Memorial, will be the featured speaker for the program. Fillmore practices with the AEGIS Law Kansas City, Missouri, team.

His distinguished military service includes graduation from the Artillery Officers Candidate School (OCS) at Fort Sill, Oklahoma; a combat assignment with an infantry division during the Vietnam War; and an assignment to the Special Weapons Command in Germany. In Vietnam, Fillmore received numerous medals and letters of recommendation, including multiple Bronze Stars, Air Medals, Army Commendation Medals and the Vietnam Campaign Ribbon with three campaign stars, among others.

He is a member of the U.S. Army Artillery OCS Hall of Fame. Fillmore is the co-founder and chairman of the board of St. Michael’s Veterans Center in Kansas City, Missouri, that provides permanent housing for homeless and disabled veterans. He has also been the recipient of the Harry S Truman Good Neighbor Foundation Veterans Silver Medal Award.

Following Fillmore’s remarks, guests will be invited to join in a prayer for veterans. Three volleys and “Taps” played by members of American Legion Post 370 will close the program.

Veterans, families and friends are invited to attend the Nov. 11 programs. Small U.S. flags will be available for placement at gravesites at both the Topeka and Lenexa locations.

For more information, call Catholic Cemeteries at (913) 371-4040 (main number) or (785) 272-0820 (Topeka); send an email to:; or visit the website at:

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The Leaven

The Leaven is the official newspaper of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas.

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