The Latest: Speaker: US still lives in 'long shadow' of WWI
KANSAS CITY (AP) — The Latest on events marking the 100th anniversary of the day the U.S. entered World War I (all times local):
Top officials in France are honoring the centennial of the day that the United States entered World War I.
French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian urged diplomats and veterans Thursday at Paris' U.S. embassy to remember "the courage of America and the millions of soldiers that came to fight at our side." And he noted that French soldiers who attended a similar commemoration in Kansas City, Missouri, demonstrated how "our countries are coming together around a common history."
U.S. Embassy Charge D'Affaires Uzra Zeya, who opened the French event, said World War I showed how countries could "work together against a common enemy."
Kelly Carrigg, a U.S. army veteran of the Iraq War, attended the French event, calling the American relationship with France "one of the oldest alliances in the world and it's still alive today."
The head of a panel behind the commemoration of the day the U.S. entered World War I credits the American involvement and its military might with ending the bloodshed.
Retired Army Col. Robert Dalessandro of the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission told a crowd of thousands Thursday on the Kansas City, Missouri, grounds of the nation's official World War I memorial that "we still live in the long shadow of (that conflict) in every aspect of our lives."
Dalessandro added that "America entered the war to bring liberty, democracy and peace to the world after almost three years of unprecedented hardship, strife and horror."
Thursday's daylong observance titled, "In Sacrifice for Liberty and Peace," included patriotic music, readings from the time America declared war on Germany, and a flyover by planes that left plumes of red, white and blue smoke.
Thousands of people have gathered at a Kansas City, Missouri, memorial to mark the 100th anniversary of the day the U.S. entered World War I.
A sellout crowd of 3,000 onlookers snapped up tickets for Thursday's event on the grounds of the nation's official World War I monument, the Liberty Memorial.
The day of remembrance kicked off with patriotic music and a video piece about a soldier narrated by the actor Gary Sinise. It will also feature speeches and readings from the time America declared war on Germany.
Matt Naylor, who heads the city's National World War I Museum and Memorial, says the event has been years in the making and "is commemorating, not celebrating" the day the U.S. was drawn into the war.
Foreign dignitaries from around the world are converging on Kansas City, Missouri, and its towering World War I monument to observe the 100th anniversary of the day the U.S. entered "The Great War."
A sellout crowd of 3,000 onlookers also snapped up tickets for the daylong observance Thursday titled, "In Sacrifice for Liberty and Peace."
The event on the grounds of the Liberty Memorial — the nation's official World War I monument — will feature patriotic music, speeches and readings from the time America declared war on Germany.
As president and CEO of the city's National World War I Museum and Memorial, Matt Naylor says Thursday's event that's been years in the making "is commemorating, not celebrating" the day the U.S. was drawn into war.
[Editor's note: KOMU.com has updated this story to add the latest news.]