Many thanks for a wonderful, patriotic parade

Published 1:52 pm Wednesday, July 10, 2024

Denmark Star Route

The Parade in Oxford on the 4th of July was wonderful.

Wayne Andrews started months ago getting things lined up for the affair and it went off like a roman candle, colorful, lots of action and awe inspiring. The veterans arrived with several vehicles and enthusiasm.

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The American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Disabled American Veterans were on one trailer provided by Mark
Hammond. The Marine Corps League was on another trailer provided by Phillips. General Waller led the procession in the Jeep restored by Dennis Bullard.

The Jeep was marked up as they were in Oxford’s own 108th Armored Cavalry from back in the day.

Greg Lovelady and Dennis Bullard honchoed the Veterans while Wayne Andrews and crew corralled and organized over 200 parents, kids, and grandparents into some semblance of order before the parade. I would not know how to quantify which
group had the most fun.

The crowd was wonderful and the kids were exuberant beyond words. I knew this was a big event when Bruce Newman arrived to take photos. It is not an event unless Bruce Newman commits the occasion to Oxford history with his camera.

Independence Day is the day our nation declared itself separate and sovereign and celebrated as our birthday. That was the feeling at the Parade had, of one big birthday bash.

The Boy Scouts carried flags and marched, fire trucks from both Oxford and Lafayette departments, ambulances and police front and rear sirens adding to the celebration. Veterans were on the trailers decorated with patriotic finery.

The Oxford horse detail riding caught my eye on their magnificent beasts. Parents and children were exuberant as the entourage traveled down Jackson Ave took a left at the church then another left at Van Buren and back to our starting places. Not too long a distance, but in the heat it was far enough.

The impressions I have are of our friends who traveled from Clarksdale to celebrate with us DAV Chapter 63 Commander
Donnie Jones, Vice Commander Louis Pike, Adjutant Rosa Buschlen. Also on the trailer from Chapter 48 here in Oxford was 1st Junior Vice David Bella, Adjutant Andy Pruitt and Dale Barrios. The new commander for the Veterans of Foreign Wars Will Mobley walked behind the trailer along with Sid McManus, a 101st Airborne alumni.

Returning to the parking lot where we started from we were greeted by Senator Nicole Boyd.

There is no better advocate for Veterans and Children than Nicole.

Our Representative from Panola County Josh Hawkins was there. Other representatives may have been in attendance who own
a slice of Lafayette County but I did not see them.

There were many, many others who rode, marched, supported, and waved to the crowd/

Thanks to those in the crowd who stood in the heat and waved back, sharing the joy of Independence Day.

To those many people who invested time and materials to this parade, thank you seems inadequate. Perhaps the best return on investment of the parade is the shared smiles, laughter, friendship and camaraderie.

To the children who walked, rode bikes, wagons, and other wondrously decorated wheeled menagerie of kid-powered vehicles that transported themselves along with a cargo of laughter and joy – thank you.