From sailor to Grand Marshall

Eaton said the parade is a "pretty huge undertaking," which he now fully realizes as being head of the committee. Von Maucher said the planning beginnings typically in September for the following year's parade.

"There is a lot of preplanning and stuff and trying to find out how you can get for a Grand Marshall," said von Maucher. "We try to recognize somebody while they are still around We try to recognize the local people that are active in the military."

The Grand Marshall for the parade this year is Master Sgt. Corine Lombardo of the Army National Guard. Lombardo has served for over 30 years and has been deployed on various national emergency situations, said Eaton.

While there might be lively festivities for Memorial Day, von Maucher said it isn't a celebration like the Fourth of July.

"Memorial day is not a celebration, it is a remembrance," he said. "It is part of Americanism and part of patriotic observation and a 'thank you' for people that gave their lives to keep our country free."

Eaton echoed von Maucher's sediment sentiment about the holiday and said the parade is just to get people to the event.

"There is nothing happy about a memorial day, you are remembering those that died, other than the fact that you knew them and you didn't have to pay that price," said Eaton. "It is for those that are left to know that they didn't die in vein and their death wasn't worthless and they died for something."

The parade also helps the youth remember and respect the sacrifices made by veterans, said von Maucher.

"A lot of it is to keep it in the minds of the younger people. The sacrifices made by veterans and their families to keep us free," he said. "They see it on TV about us being in Afghanistan forever, but you got to keep it in their minds and educate the younger people of what has been done to save their freedom and democracy in the United States."

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