Above: The EGHS Avenger Band. Photo courtesy of Sandra Saunders.
The annual East Greenwich Veterans Day Parade stepped off from Academy Field on a sunny and mild morning Thursday, with several bands, historical militias, veterans, scouts, and participants like the EG Historic Cemetery Commission and the Providence Ballet.
Fr. Tim Rich from St. Luke’s Episcopal Church delivered prayers at the parade’s two stops. Bob Houghtaling served as master of ceremonies. The parade’s grand marshal this year was EGPD Sgt. Christopher Callan, named posthumously after his untimely death last July. Callan had served in the Army National Guard. Brigadier Gen. Michael Comstock with the R.I. Air National Guard spoke at the closing ceremonies, and members of that unit marched in the parade behind the Grand Marshal banner.
“We’re here to honor a good friend of ours, Chris Callan,” said Sgt. Major Greg Kelly, before the parade began. “He was a great solider and a great friend. He was a police officer for East Greenwich. He being the grand marshal of this parade, we wanted to make sure we had members of our unit here to walk in his place. We are proud to do that. It was his legacy of service that brought us down here to march.”
The icing on this year’s parade cake was when a plane from the 143rd Airlift Wing (out of Quonset) flew over Main Street at the end of the National Anthem.
Second R.I. Volunteers, Civil War reenactors. Photo courtesy of Sandra Saunders.
Kentish Guard drummers of the Fife and Drum Corps. Photo courtesy of Sandra Saunders.
Members of the Kentish Guard. Photo courtesy of Sandra Saunders.
EG Police Department color guard. Photo courtesy of Sandra Saunders.
R.I. Air National Guard members march in honor of Grand Marshal (posthumously) Christopher Callan, who also served in that unit. Photo courtesy of Sandra Saunders.
All five members of the EG Town Council marched in Thursday’s parade, from left Renu Englehart, Mike Zarrella, Caryn Corenthal (obscured), Mark Schwager (president), and Mike Donegan (V.P.). Photo courtesy of Sandra Saunders.
R.I. Representative Justine Caldwell, with her children, Escher and Lulu. Photo courtesy of Sandra Saunders.
The EG Historic Cemetery Commission’s float, towed by members Alan Clarke and Deron Murphy. Photo courtesy of Sandra Saunders.
The Rhode Island Highlanders Pipe Band. Photo courtesy of Sandra Saunders.
A member of the Combat Veterans Association motorcycle group. Photo courtesy of Sandra Saunders.
Providence Mounted Police.
The reviewing stand, with members of the Town Council, the School Committee and state officials.
Avenger Band boosters, from left, Margaret Neville, Catherine Neville, Sachi Chan and Sarah Clarke. They came out to support their friends in the band because so many band members have been supportive of them in their sports efforts.
Flag-waving spectators on Main Street at the EGHS Avenger Band marches by.
Parade watchers, from left, Laina, Maddie, Maeve, Maiori, Talia and Tessa, with Griffen and Sienna in back.
The Varnum Continentals on Main Street.
Marcia Abbey, 6, and Jonas Abbey, 5, who live in East Greenwich, were both enthusiastic parade watchers. As Marcia waved her heart flag, Jonas kept repeating, “Go America!”
Charlotte Dumas had a prime viewing spot when the parade stopped at the WWI memorial.
Capt. John Romano, USN (ret), arrives at Town Hall for the parade’s closing ceremonies in style. The truck is being driven by John Pierson, NKFD (ret).
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As I observed the parade from my private reviewing stand on the cemetery wall opposite Eldredge school, a strange thought came to me.
Back in the day, ALL those marching would know ALL those watching and ALL those watching would know ALL those marching.
Caused me to chuckle. Good Job Leigh!
I love our town! What a beautiful day and parade to honor our veterans. Perfect view, Elizabeth. How fun for James! Great job as always, Leigh!
Sunny fall day + fife & drums = East Greenwich Veterans Day parade! As someone who was one of seven members in the EGHS band a half-century ago, is great to see how it has grown. Delightful video and photos!
We aim to please, Mark!