Click this link below to check out this Somerville Parade video on YouTube:
The flag wove from the top of Somerville City Hall— and down in the hands of the community. Somerville’s annual Memorial Day Parade began its march from City Hall down Highland Avenue Sunday afternoon, March 25th and concluded in Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery with a ceremony of commemoration for its countries’ fallen service members.
US Army Coronel Mark Cremin recounts his experience as Grand Marshal of the 2014 Somerville Memorial Day Parade as a, “tremendous privilege and honor,” and “something I will never forget.” Cremin made his way to the starting line of the parade with a short procession down Highland Ave at 8am to the Central Library. Along the way the ceremony recognized lost service members by placing wreaths on monuments by Central Hill Park.
As always the Aleppo Shriners, representatives of local veterans, school groups, and Somerville’s fire and police units paraded down Highland Ave followed by a procession of performers. However, this year’s parade was joined by a grand total of seventy-six organizations and fifteen preforming groups. Michael S. Cabral, Deputy Chief of the Somerville Police Department, recalled, “each year is bigger, more bands, and more of everyone.” As a boy Cabral attended the parade with his family and dreamed of becoming a police officer so he too could march in the parade. Twenty-eight years later and Cabral leads Somerville’s police force both on duty and down it’s annual Memorial Day Parade march.
After Cabral’s retrospection, District Attorney of the Middlesex County, Marian Ryan, reveled, “This is my fifth year and I love this parade! Best thing about it is its family fun and it’s one of the best Memorial Day parades to bring your own kids to every year.”
This was certainly the case for Somerville citizen, Nancy Baldwin, and her four-year-old granddaughter, Amalia Beckmann. Amalia reflected that her favorite part about the Memorial Day Parade was the Mickey and Minnie characters, but quickly changed her mind after she heard her grandmother respond, “Mine would be the bands.” Amalia responded, “That’s mine too. I like two parts.”
Somerville’s 2014 Memorial Day Parade bands played “You’re a Grand Old Flag,” for young and old generations during the procession down Highland Ave and ended with a ceremony of remembrance in the Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery. Sunday’s ceremony concluded as the community waved a flag for those who died in active military service.