America Supports You: National Memorial Day Parade Salutes Veterans
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, May 24, 2006 More than 600 servicemembers representing the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard and Army National Guard veterans of Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom will take part in the National Memorial Day Parade here May 29.
The parade is the first "national" public event in which recently deployed servicemembers will be welcomed home, according to event organizers.
Patriotic activities such as the National Memorial Day Parade are one way Americans can show their support for men and women in uniform, said Roxie T. Merritt, spokeswoman for the Defense Department's "America Supports You" program, which highlights the support of the American people for members of the armed forces and their families.
"Making troops aware of that support is an important contribution to the morale of our military members," she added.
The one-mile parade, which begins at noon, will cover a route mainly down Constitution Ave. in the nation's capital. Besides paying tribute to veterans from past and present campaigns, the parade will honor active duty military personnel and all those who have died defending the United States.
Notable veterans from World War I through Desert Storm will serve as grand marshals alongside grand marshal Gary Sinise, the Emmy Award-winning actor and film director who is often noted for his efforts in raising awareness about the sacrifices made by members of the military and paying homage to their work.
Hundreds of veterans of World War I, World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the battles in Grenada and Somalia, and the Gulf War will also march in the parade, along with representatives from countries such as the United Kingdom, France and Canada.
The National Memorial Day Parade is organized by a coalition of military, veteran and civic groups in association with the World War II Veterans Committee, the White House Commission for Remembrance, and America Supports You.
For more information on the parade, visit www.nationalmemorialdayparade.com