Veterans Day parade set for Sunday on Main Street
Area's largest salute to veterans comes a week ahead of holiday
The Pleasanton-based Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6298 and American Legion Post 237 will host the 2012 Tri-Valley Veterans Day Parade starting at 1 p.m. Sunday, with a patriotic program of music and messages following at the Veterans Memorial Building.
The event is being held exactly one week ahead of the day the country will celebrate Veterans Day this year, a tradition for the Pleasanton observance so that veterans can join in other celebrations on Nov. 11.
This year's event will feature military and veteran color guards, marching bands, horses, jeeps, Humvees and other military vehicles. Marching along the way also will be Girl Scout and Boy Scout organizations, Scottish pipe and drum units, the Alameda County Sheriff's Posse, elected officials from Tri-Valley cities and veterans from Afghanistan, Iraq, Vietnam, Korea and even World War II.
The U.S. Army Band and the Foothill High School marching band will play patriotic music along the parade. The Amador Valley High School marching band declined the VFW's invitation.
New features to this year's parade include three flyovers, by a T-38 jet fighter plane and then a Vietnam era Huey helicopter and a Coast Guard Dolphin helicopter.
The theme of this year's parade is "Purple Hearts, Honoring Those Wounded in the Service of Our Country." Special tribute will be given to Gold Star families who will be in the parade.
The parade Grand Marshall will be retired Army Sgt. Victor Thibeault, who served in Afghanistan, was awarded both a Silver Star and a Purple Heart, and is a member of the Army's Wounded Warrior program.
The parade review officer and keynote speaker will be retired Navy Capt. William Waters.
Immediately following, the veterans groups will host a Veterans Day ceremony at the Veterans Memorial Building at 301 Main St. with a guest speaker and patriotic music provided by the Pleasanton Community Band.
This year, the U.S. Marines and members of the P-Town Pushrods car club will collect Toys for Tots before, during and after the parade along the parade route, at the review stand in front of the Museum on Main and at the Veterans Memorial Building. Donors are asked to give only new, boxed toys as their contributions.
The parade will start next to the Veterans Memorial Building on Old Bernal Avenue and then continue north on Main Street to St. Mary Street.
For more information, call David Ham at 580-6661.