Local News

Raleigh Parade, Ceremony Honors Veterans

Posted November 10, 2007 8:00 p.m. EST

— An estimated 90,000 veterans call Wake County home. On Saturday, the 26th Annual Veterans Day Parade & Ceremony was held in downtown Raleigh.

“I think it’s an honor to support the veterans and what they’ve done for our country,” said Michelle Parsons.

Veteran Robert Gonier said he thinks support for troops comes in waves.

“I wish more people would come out to encourage the troops that are in this thing,” he said.

Police estimated about 1,500 to 2,000 people came to watch Saturday’s parade. Organizers couldn't give an average annual attendance, but it's not unusual for downtown Raleigh parades to see crowds of 10,000 or more.

Some blamed the cooler weather. Also, some advertisements for the parade had the incorrect start time.

Among the veterans who attended Saturday were World War II vets and those who recently served in Iraq.

Army Reservist Lashonda Harris said she attended the parade, not to receive, but to give thanks to other veterans.

“I wanted them to know that I appreciate it,” she said.

About 75 marching units participated in the parade. Organizers said it was fewer than in years past, because not as many groups volunteered to do the parade this year.

The event was sponsored by the Wake County Council of Veterans Organizations. Parade participants included high school bands, ROTC groups, Boy Scout groups, Marine Corps Leagues, American Legion groups and VFW Posts.