NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - Residents lined the parade route to honor those who have fought and died for this nation at the annual New Providence Memorial Day Parade on Monday.
The parade began at the intersection of Central Avenue and Springfield Avenue and continued down Springfield, led by Police Captain Wayne Maurer in his police cruiser. Members of American Legion Post 433 marched on foot, followed by A.L.V.I.S. members, National Guard servicemen in a military jeep, the New Providence Police Department Honor Guard, and many other town organizations and groups. The New Providence High School Band played music throughout the parade.
The parade paused at the United Methodist Church, where Reverend Charles Wagner offered a prayer service for past and present military members. Gerry Gross, Legion Finance Officer and co-chair of the parade, conducted the memorial service carried out by the NPPD Honor Guard across the street, in the church cemetery.
At the Presbyterian Church, Reverend Michael Flavin spoke about the “three things [that] are true about American freedom...we cannot live without it...it was bought with a high price...[and] it can never be taken for granted.” Gross then led another memorial service, again performed by the NPPD Honor Guard in the church graveyard.
Parade goers marched over to the New Providence Memorial Library, where the final memorial service was held on the library lawn. After the NPHS Band performed the national anthem, Michael Gennaro, Borough Council President, honored those soldiers who have sacrificed their lives: “May they rest in peace, and may we never forget the values which inspired them to serve their country.” Legion Chaplain John Harrell then led a prayer. Gross thanked the band, the attending members of the National Guard, and all other participants.
The parade concluded with Gross inviting everyone to the Legion Post for refreshments.