Monday Parade Honors Wilmington Veterans
Wilmington's Memorial Day parade is slated for Monday at 10 a.m.
This is one of Lou Cimaglia’s favorite times of the year. And not just because Monday is Wilmington’s annual parade.
According to the Wilmington Veterans’ Agent, Memorial Day weekend is an important time to reflect and honor the men and women who have given the ultimate sacrifice.
“This is a big weekend,” said Cimaglia. “Everyone will hopefully stop and remember all of our fallen heroes, those who sacrificed themselves to serve and never made it home. It’s a special weekend for me, and it means a lot to see people honor all of the sacrifices that these men, women and their families have made.”
This year’s parade will feature a different twist as members of the Korean War are honored along with other members of the armed forces. Cimaglia said these veterans fought in what is often seen as a forgotten war, so it is important to get them the recognition they deserve.
Monday’s parade begins at 10 a.m., starting on Main Street and traveling down Church Street to Middlesex Ave. Participants marching in the parade are asked to gather at 9:30 a.m., adults in the Market Basket parking lot and youth groups at Wilmington House of Pizza.
According to Wilmington veteran Craig Sullivan, who was injured during duty in Iraq, Memorial Day is an emotional time.
“It just makes me thankful and appreciative being from this country,” said Sullivan. “Veterans Day and Memorial Day, I just get that feeling inside that I am truly proud to be an American.”
As the parade moves down Middlesex Ave. on Monday, participants will continue to Wildwood Cemetery, where they will place flags on the graves of soldiers who paid the ultimate sacrifice and gave their lives serving the country.
Cimaglia said one of the amazing aspects of town’s Memorial Day parade is seeing residents of all ages participating.
“The big thing is that around Veterans Day and Memorial Day, you find there are a lot more people that said ‘Thank you for your service.’ That goes a long way,” said Cimaglia. “These young kids have their issues. When they get a ‘thank you’ or a ‘welcome home,’ it really makes their day.”
Adam Smith, a friend of Sullivan’s and a fellow Marine, agreed that Memorial Day provides an extra boost for veterans.
“You really see how much more appreciative people are for what you did,” said Smith. “It makes me proud to have served.”