By Kevin Dye
The call is going out once again for Madison County veterans to participate and be recognized in the West Jefferson Ox Roast parade on Labor Day weekend.
The auxiliaries of the West Jefferson Clarence “Bo” Casto VFW Post 7005 and the West Jefferson American Legion Post 201 have planned a day of activities for those veterans who would like to ride on the World War II veterans float in the Ox Roast parade to be held on Saturday, Sept. 1. The float platform is wheelchair accessible and all Madison County veterans are invited to ride in the parade.
“We do this because without the action of these wonderful men we would not be here today,” organizer Cindy Forrest said. “We respect what they have provided us and that’s what the float is about, recognizing their sacrifice for our country.”
This is the fourth year for the World War II veterans float in the Ox Roast parade. Forrest said that the response from the veterans and their family members is amazing.
“We have one of the largest World War II veterans float in central Ohio,” Forrest said. “We receive some of the most touching letters after the Ox Roast from the men and their families saying how much they appreciate that we do this for our veterans.”
Veterans will register at 9:30 a.m. the morning of Sept. 1 at the West Jefferson VFW Post 7005, located at 1 Veterans Way in the village. A continental breakfast will be provided for the veteran and his family. At 10:30 a.m. there will be a group picture taken of all the veterans riding on the float that day.
The VFW staff will have transportation available for the veterans or their family can transport them to Jefferson Local School Administration building at 906 W. Main St. (U.S. Route 40) starting at 10:30 a.m. There will be shade, chairs, water, restrooms and escorts with walkers and wheelchairs at the school building.
The parade will begin at noon and the veterans float will be the first unit in the parade behind the color guard. The veterans’ names will be announced to the crowd from the judges table. The family members of the veterans will be transported to a designated shaded tent with chairs so they can watch the parade in comfort.
After the parade the veterans and their family members will be treated to a full service luncheon at the West Jefferson VFW 7005 from 1:30-3:30 p.m., along with a complimentary cocktail/beverage for each veteran.
To register for the event or for more information you can contact Cindy Forrest at (614) 582-0971 or Ray Ott at (614) 579-6091. Veterans are urged to register by Tuesday, Aug. 28 so the group can plan for the amount of veterans taking part in the event.