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New Memorial Day Parade route for annual observance
There are plenty of great viewing spots along the new parade route for West Chester’s annual Memorial Day Parade!
Bring a blanket or chair and join neighbors along Cincinnati-Dayton Road, south of West Chester Road, beginning at 10 a.m. Monday, May 28. This event is presented by the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7696.
New in 2018, the parade starting location has moved to the intersection of Aviation Way and Dimmick Road. The route goes north on Cincinnati-Dayton Road to West Chester Road before heading west to Brookside Cemetery.
A presentation honoring those who have served and those who continue to serve in the military immediately follows the parade at the cemetery where more than 700 veterans, including 100 who served in the Civil War and one who served in the Revolutionary War, are among those buried.
Llano Coolidge Bell, 96, will be recognized as this year’s parade grand marshal. Mr. Bell was drafted into the service at the age of 18 in 1944, just a few years after the attacks on Pearl Harbor, and elected to join the U.S. Navy.
Mr. Bell was assigned to serve aboard the USS Hamlin, a seaplane tender, during World War II engagements in locations including Pearl Harbor, Saipan, Guam, Iwo Jima, and Tokyo, until Japan formally surrendered to the Allies on September 2, 1945. Mr. Bell would later be reassigned to join the crew of the USS Rushmore for a brief stint until an injury forced his military discharge.
Serving as guest speaker is Army National Guard Colonel James D. Eriksen, Jr., a current member of VFW Post 7696 and former Post Commander from 2010 to 2013. Mr. Eriksen graduated with his bachelor’s degree in Criminology in 1991 from The Ohio State University, where he also earned his Commission with the Army ROTC program. He is an active member of the Ohio National Guard and, as an Army Ranger, has recently served duties in Afghanistan and Kosovo.
Mr. Eriksen earned a promotion to Colonel on November 6, 2015 and has been awarded a number of medals including: The Global War on Terror Expeditionary Medal; The Global War on Terror Service Medal; Afghanistan Campaign Medal; The Bronze Star Medal; Combat Infantryman Badge (CIB); Ranger Tab; Pathfinder Badge; and the Senior Parachutist Badge.
The Rev. Mark Dude Evans will again serve as chaplain.
Parade spectators may park in the designated north lot of the Northpointe at Union Centre office park, accessible only from Imagination Way on Union Centre Boulevard; or parking is also available at St. John the Evangelist Church on Cincinnati-Dayton Road.
The parade route change was made this year in order to accommodate construction on Cincinnati-Dayton Road through Olde West Chester.
The Memorial Day Parade and ceremony promotes a family-friendly atmosphere and is intended to pay tribute to those who serve our country.
Download a printable PDF map.
Find more information and register online to be part of this annual tribute.