The annual Memorial Day parade is set to make its way through downtown on Monday, May 27 followed by a ceremony at the Whitefish Cemetery.
The theme of this year’s parade is “Never Forget Their Sacrifice.” The parade begins at 3 p.m. following Second Street beginning at Spokane Avenue and ending at the cemetery.
Sheila Schwegel-Coulter, Whitefish’s Lion Mountain VFW Post 276 Quartermaster, said last week there were triple the number of participants signed up to participate than in year’s past.
“We are working hard to make this year’s parade bigger and better than it has been in the past,” says Schwegel-Coulter.
The parade will pause at the Veterans Memorial Bridge and the VFW Auxiliary 276 will perform a Memorial Ceremony on the bridge. Then the parade will continue to the cemetery the VFW 276 will perform another Memorial Ceremony.
Retired U.S. Army Colonel Ward E. Marshall will serve as guest speaker for the ceremony at the cemetery.
Marshall served 33 years in the Army including service in Iraq and Afghanistan as an advisor, additionally he held various assignments in U.S. Pentagon on the Army Staff. He is a survivor of the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon and performed Pentagon emergency operations duty for several months following the attack.
He earned his doctorate of management from the Colorado Technical University with emphasis on Homeland Security, has master degrees in strategic studies and business administration in addition to several bachelors degrees. He authored a chapter “How to Work Well with Middle East Cultures” for the postgraduate textbook “Innovative Leadership.”
“We are honored to have him speak at our Memorial Day Ceremony,” said Schwegel-Coulter.
Following the ceremony, the VFW and Auxiliary will be hosting a free barbecue picnic at the VFW Post 276 at 20 Baker Avenue. Hamburgers, hot dogs and salads will be served.
For questions regarding the parade, contact Schwegel-Coulter at 406-270-0928.