NEW YORK --
Marines from Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force 26 marched in the 90th annual Veterans Day Parade in New York City in honor of military members both past and present Nov. 11, 2009.
The parade was preceded by a ceremony where several guests spoke, including Sergeant Major of the Army Kenneth O. Preston, Medal of Honor recipient, Bob Kerrey, New York City Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, and Governor of New York, David Patterson. The guests spoke about what Veterans Day means to them and how proud they were of military servicemembers.
People gathered after the ceremony in front of the Eternal Light Monument, a memorial erected in New York City’s Madison Square Park to pay tribute to those who serve in the United States military.
Nearly 30,000 people marched down 5th Ave. when the parade started. Crowds gathered, cheering and clapping as soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and coast guardsmen passed by.
“I was honored to be able to march in the parade and be cheered on by all those people,” said Cpl. Wesley T. Clark, a ground communications repairman with SPMAGTF-26. “It helps remind people what military members past and present have gone through to protect their freedoms.”