Veterans Day Parade takes High Street

High Street was flooded with the blare of trumpets and other instruments as old-time cars, war veterans and numerous organizations paraded down the street at 10:45 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 9, for the annual Veterans Day Parade. 

Rick Black, Veterans Day Parade chairman and U.S. Navy Vietnam veteran, said this event was hosted to appreciate all of the past and present veterans.

“To show veterans that we do appreciate the work that they’ve done in the past or that they’re doing presently and to just thank them very much for that,” Black said. “Because if it wasn’t for the veterans, [we] would not have the rights that [we] do have.”

The event was sponsored by the Veterans Council of Greene County. The James. L. Farrell Post 330 American Legion, Waynesburg VFW Post 4793, Carmichaels VFW Post 3491 and Greene County Honor Guard all assisted with the event.

Black said they have been preparing for this event for about a month and a half. Many of the preparations and floats were the same as earlier years, but this year they decided to include local  football players by giving them the honor of carrying an American flag in the parade. 

“We [had] a 12 foot by 16 foot flag carried down main street by high school football players,” Black said.

Rachel Pellegrino, The Yellow Jacket

The veterans council also decided to specifically commemorate World War II and Korean War veterans, since they’re the most recent veterans to serve. This was accomplished by having the parade Grand Marshals acting as World War II and Korean War veterans. 

“Because we want to honor people while they’re still alive,” Black said. “We want to thank them for their service while they can be thanked.”

Many veterans participated in and attended the parade to show respect for the fallen soldiers and gratitude toward everyone’s appreciation. One of the attendees was AirForce Cold War veteran Harland Headlee.

“I was working in the communication center in Westover, Massachusetts. I was two years on the base itself and then they moved us under the mountain for security purposes in case of a nuclear attack,” said Headlee, describing his experience during the Cold War.

Headlee said Veterans Day is not just to remember the living but also the ones whose lives have been lost to war.

“We do appreciate all of the veterans today that keep up our defensivist country and our patriotism because that’s why we have the freedoms we have to vote and go to church and all the things that we take for granted because of veterans that gave their lives and the living,” he said. 

Headlee said he’s only missed the parade a few times. His consistent attendance can be attributed to his patriotism and great appreciation for veterans. 

“Thank God for veterans and the U.S.A.”