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Memorial Day parade committee in high gear

Plans for the biggest event in Lawrence County are in high gear.

The 142nd Ironton-Lawrence County Memorial Day Parade will be 10 a.m.Monday, May 31, in Ironton.

This year’s parade theme is “Land of the Free, Because of the Brave.”

This theme choice came about from a committee discussion regarding the parade theme, Brent Pyles, parade committee president explained.

“This year’s grand marshal, Ella McCown, said that she had been inspired by a radio program that she had listened to, on which a father discussed the loss of two of his sons in service to our nation,” Pyles said. “This gentleman indicated that because of the bravery and ultimate sacrifice of uncounted patriots, like his sons, that our nation remains the land of the free.  Mrs. McCown deemed it fitting that our theme should reflect that honor.  The committee agreed and selected that theme for the 142nd  ILCMDP.”

Along with McCown as grand marshal, the parade commander is Angie Chamberlain.

The honorary grand marshal, an honor always bestowed on a Lawrence County veteran, is former Lawrence County Common Pleas Judge Richard Walton.

Walton served in the U.S. Army from 1957-1959 in the “A” Troop, 2nd Squadron, 7th Calvary, 3rd Division.

An infantryman, he was stationed in Bamberg, Germany and trained in military communication (constant wave), according to information from the parade committee.

The Ironton-Lawrence County Memorial Day Parade is recognized as the oldest continuous Memorial Day Parade in the nation.  

The first parade was in 1868 to memorialize the Civil War dead, and has continued the tradition every year since, honoring all those who have served our country.

The parade procession begins at the corner of Fourth and Center streets, continues down Center to Third Street, turn left onto Third and continues to Quincy Street.

After a left turn on Quincy Street, the procession continues to Sixth Street where it makes another left turn and ends at the courthouse.

The City of Ironton requires those who wish to sell food items along the parade route during the Ironton-Lawrence County Memorial Day Parade to have the requisite license from the city health department.

Applications may be made to the health department no later than May 25.

The health department is located at 2120 S. Eighth St.

For more information call 532-2172.