IRONTON, OHIO (WOWK) — The streets of Ironton came alive with the spirit of remembrance as the town hosted its 153rd annual Ironton-Lawrence County Memorial Day Parade.
The long-lived tradition holds the title of being the longest and most continuous Memorial Day parade in the nation.
“I’m honored to continue this tradition moving forward,” said Ironton City Mayor, Sam Cramblit.”I think it speaks volumes how we honor our fallen veterans here.”
For many in the crowd, it’s extremely special being able to attend this year’s event in person.
“Well it means more to the families of our brothers and sisters that didn’t make it home,” said Roger Estep with Vietnam Veterans of America #949 Huntington. “To show that we still honor them, we miss them, and hope one day that we can have peace on this earth.”
The city was forced to scale down the annual parade last year, making those in attendance even more excited and proud to see the tradition live on and to honor their fallen heroes.
“The theme of this year’s parade is service, valor, and sacrifice,” said Dorothy Spillman with the Nurse Honor Guard at the River Cities. “It’s a privilege for us to be there and the families appreciate it so much.”
People had their spots secured in Downtown Ironton since the night before the event to assure they had the perfect spot to see the parade in its full glory.
“My dad, he passed away in ‘06 and he served in the Korean War,” said Memorial Day parade attendee, Wanda Napier. “I am proud that he served our country so we can have the freedom. I’m proud to be an American that’s what it is.”