Annual Veterans Parade makes long-awaited return to Bangor

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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) – After taking time off last year due to COVID, the annual Veterans Day Parade has returned to the streets of Bangor and Brewer.

“The parade is really run by the Bangor JROTC. What we do at the Cole Museum is sort of rallying the veterans that we have on our mailing list through our walking stick program. We encourage them to come out with their trekking poles and walk behind their banner and be appreciated by the locals, ”said Jim Neville, CEO of the Museum.

The museum invites dozens of veterans from as far back as World War II.

“I feel really good. Glad to be back. Happy to be with my friends and comrades, of course, ”said Barry Bennett, a Vietnam veteran.

“It was empty. Hopefully we get back together soon, we get back to normal. We can do it maybe July 4th or actually Memorial Day,” said Ron Cote, a Vietnam veteran.

These parades are an important way for our veterans to share their stories and catch up with their friends.

“People relied on all three parades to see old friends and old buddies, and they haven’t had that in a few years. So having that and seeing them come together, shake hands and act like they haven’t missed a thing, that’s pretty cool, ”Neville said. “It’s just a really uplifting thing for everyone to finally have the opportunity to do it. Doing something that they have always loved that stuff has been taken away from them for a while.

In recent years, the museum also had an indoor event after the parade.

It was still on hold, but with the hope of coming back next year.

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