Chicago Community Commemorates 14th Anniversary of Ukraine’s Independence

Chicago Community Commemorates 14th Anniversary

Daley Plaza in downtown Chicago radiated with warmth from the bright sun on 24 August 2005 as members of Chicago’s Ukrainian hromada filled the square to celebrate the 14th anniversary of Ukraine’s independence. Everyone also radiated with pride because of the huge Ukrainian flag that flew over the plaza. The blue and gold standard was posted at a sunrise flag raising ceremony conducted by Ukrainian American Veterans Post 32.

Pavlo Bandriwsky performed Master of Ceremony duties, welcoming the community to the commemoration on behalf of the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America, Illinois Division (UCCA). He introduced Orest Baranyk, President of the UCCA Division who gave concise speeches in Ukrainian and English reviewing the progress which has been made in Ukraine since the last independence commemoration.

The next speaker was Oleh Shevchenko, Acting Consul General who shared warm greetings from the Ukrainian government and underscored Ukraine’s journey on the path of freedom and democracy. Pat Michalski, on behalf of Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas, read a friendly greeting to the Ukrainian Consulate and the Ukrainian community paying tribute to the anniversary.

Mr. Bandriwsky successively introduced the musical entertainment: sopilka and flute player Vasyl Perovanchuk, singer Mykola Sikora and the “Golden Saxophone of Ukraine” Ihor Rudy. Each performed two numbers and was deeply appreciated by loud applause from the audience. Mr. Bandriwsky thanked UCCA committee members for organizing the celebration, especially Bohdan Buchwak for handling all details relating to the performances and the audience for turning out for the celebration downtown. In closing Father Mychajlo Melnik lead a prayer for a strong and independent Ukraine and a united Ukrainian American diaspora working together for our beloved Ukraine.