The Lower Merion Memorial Day Observance will take place on Monday, May 29th, with several events planned to honor veterans. The Merion Concert Band will play U. S. Military service songs and patriotic selections beginning at 9:45 a.m. at the corner of Lancaster and Argyle Roads. Parade participants are to assemble on Greenfield Avenue at 10 a.m.

The parade will step off from Greenfield Avenue at 10:30 a.m., with a parade in review at 10:45 in front of the Lower Merion Township Building at Lancaster & Argyle. Members of the famed Tuskegee Airmen (see more below), plus area veterans and the Honor Guard from the Bryn Mawr Fire Co. will lead the parade, followed by elected officials and dignitaries, piper Daniel Emery and other parade participants along Lancaster Avenue.

Families and children are welcome with their bicycles, strollers and wagons. First, second and third place awards will be given for the best decorated bicycles.

Spectators will see First Responder units, Township veterans and civic groups, members of the Lower Merion Township Police Department, the Leon Spencer Reid Post veterans (with color guard and auxiliary), the Lower Merion Historical Society, the Friends of Linwood Park, Lower Merion Community Watch, and representatives of Lower Merion’s volunteer fire companies, among others.

The parade will process to St. Paul’s Cemetery for the Memorial Day Service at 11:15 a.m.

Also appearing in the parade: Eastwick Commandoes; Enon Trinity Drill Team & Drum Corps; Cub Scout dens, Girls Scout and Boy Scout troops; the Southwest Philadelphia Light Bearers; West Powelton Drummers; members of Next level Sports and the First Position Dance Studio, and more.

Rev. Laura Tancredi, B.A., M.Div. of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church and Capt. John J. Mulhern, U.S.N.R. (Ret.) will officiate at the Memorial Service. Henry Spady, a Vietnam veteran and past Commander of the American Legion Post #547, and Barry McKeon, a Vietnam Veteran representing the Veterans of Foreign Wars, will lead the Flag Ceremony. The Cannon Salute will be rendered by Pennsylvania’s 98th Volunteers.

Master of Ceremonies Duncan Van Dusen said the Memorial Day Observance is intended to “honor all of those who have died while serving in the country’s armed forces.” Numerous local businesses continue to support the parade, as they do each year.

The “Tuskegee Airmen” were those aviators involved in the so-called “Tuskegee Experience,” the Army Air Corps program to train African-Americans to fly and maintain combat aircraft at Moton Field near Tuskegee, Alabama, according to the group’s website. They included pilots, navigators, bombardiers, maintenance and support staff, instructors, and all the personnel who kept the planes and pilots in the air.   The Tuskegee Airmen overcame segregation and prejudice to become one of the most highly respected fighter groups of World War II—individual pilots of the 332nd Fighter Group earned 96 Distinguished Flying Crosses. The achievements of the Airmen, together with the men and women who supported them, paved the way for full integration of the U.S. military.

Source: Lower Merion Township