FORT DRUM, N.Y. (WWTI) — In observance of the newest federal holiday, Fort Drum and the 10th Mountain Division will pause many operations on Friday.
Commanding General of the 10th Mountain Division and Fort Drum Major General Brian Mennes announced on June 17 that the installation would observe Juneteenth.
This was following President Joe Biden signing the Juneteenth National Independence Day, making June 19, “Juneteenth,” a national holiday.
To honor the day, many offices across the installation will be closed. Fort Drum Medical Activity will honor previously scheduled appointments and those who wish to reschedule can do so online or by calling the office. Additionally, the Wheeler Sack Gate closed at 10:30 p.m. on Thursday and will remain closed for the weekend.
However, all CYS facilities, the Welcome Desk, Reassignments and Final Out office in Clark Hall and the Commissary and all AAFES facilities will remain open.
MG Mennes released the following statement to the Fort Drum:
On Thursday, June 17, 2021, the President signed into law: the ‘Juneteenth National Independence Day Act,” which designates Juneteenth National Independence Day as a legal public holiday. The Juneteenth Independence Day commemorates the end of slavery in the U.S. On June 19, 1895, Union Major-General Gordan Grander arrived in Galveston, Texas, and announced that ‘all slaves are free,’ two months after the Civil War had ended and two years after President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation. The news prompted a spontaneous celebration among the freed men and women of Galveston. The first large Juneteenth celebrations started in Texas the very next year and have grown into a national movement over the years.
This year our Division will recognize and celebrate Juneteenth on Friday, June 18, 2021 since June 19 falls on a Saturday. On Friday, as with all Federal holidays, we will pause many of our operations. I directed that all Soldiers supporting ongoing operations on Friday will be afforded a future day off in order to reflect and celebrate the meaning of the day. Your chain of command will have more details on what support needs to be provided. We will share information on our social media pages on what is open across our installation.
Juneteenth is rich with history and symbolism. It is a time for us as Americans to reflect upon and to celebrate the end of slavery and our nation’s continued effort to become a more perfect union.
Climb to Glory!MG Brian J. Mennes