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100th Memorial Day Service at Summit Church

Scott County Historical Society

A holiday tradition in Scott County will be observed for the 100th time on Monday. The annual service at the Summit Church, north of Davenport, is one of the oldest, continuous Memorial Day observances west of the Mississippi River. 

Tom Knapper, president of the Scott County Historical Society, says it began in 1919, when church members wanted to honor World War I veterans from the church by reading their names. Now the yearly roll call has about 300 names, from more wars, and all of Scott County.

"We do it because it's a tradition and we do it to pay respects and to honor the service men and women of the community that have served. We take pride in doing it."

The roll call now lasts about 15 to 20 minutes.

The service will include an honor guard and 21 gun salute, plus patriotic songs and speeches. 

Summit Church was built in 1858 and is owned by the historical society.

The Memorial Day service begins on Monday at 9 am. 

A native of Detroit, Herb Trix began his radio career as a country-western disc jockey in Roswell, New Mexico (“KRSY, your superkicker in the Pecos Valley”), in 1978. After a stint at an oldies station in Topeka, Kansas (imagine getting paid to play “Louie Louie” and “Great Balls of Fire”), he wormed his way into news, first in Topeka, and then in Freeport Illinois.