LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Many deserve praise for parade

To the editor:

This year’s Memorial Day Parade was fabulous!

Mother Nature helped by providing a warm sunny day. The Navy jet flyover at the beginning stirred many hearts and the people who lined the streets were wonderfully enthusiastic and our parade entrants were diverse and colorful. The veterans and dignitaries were chauffeured in the wonderful vintage cars and the speakers provided inspiration to the crowd, who were then entertained by the ever amazing Navy Northwest Band Patriotic Ensemble, “Sound of Freedom.”

This parade takes a year’s worth of effort to produce and we want to particularly thank Joyce Claus and Lisa Susan who diligently and patiently worked to take care of all the background details necessary to coordinate an event like this.

Other helpers include Benye and John Weber, Al Smith, George and Vicki Lawson, the Island County Amateur Radio Club, lots of active Navy volunteers, Cathie Harrison, Paula Spina, Patty Page, Kasia Pierzga, Prairie Center Red Apple Market and friends of Janice Vaughan, Coupeville Police Department, Island County Sheriffs Office, Coupeville Department of Public Works, Communications Relations Director Tony Popp, Kimberly Martin, NAS Exec. Assistant Laura Menders, U.S. Marine Corps Color Guard, Pearl Harbor Survivors, and the Inter-Tribal Warriors Society.

Thank you also to the speakers, Capt. Gerral David, Commanding Officer of Naval Air Station Whidbey Island; Cmdr. Joseph DiGuardo, Commanding Officer of EODMU-11; and William McDaniel, retired Navy Rear Admiral for their time and inspiration. Thank you to Mayor Nancy Conard for her warmth in hosting the event.

Thanks to Flowers Express for the boutonnieres for the parade volunteers, and Coupeville School District and the business owners along south Main who let us use their parking lots to stage the parade. Coupeville Festival Association’s grant helped pay for promotion and lunch for our volunteers and veterans.

We also thank all the parade entrants for their festive attitude throughout and their patience when things seemed wild and chaotic.

Sarah Richards


Central Whidbey Chamber of Commerce