By Sgt. Sean Berry, Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune
WARSAW , North Carolina -- style="color: #666666; margin-top: 15px; margin-bottom: 15px;">Hundreds packed the sidewalks of downtown Warsaw, North Carolina for the 97th time since 1921 during the Warsaw Veteran’s Day Parade to celebrate and recognize America’s veterans and service members on Nov. 4, 2017.
Marines with 1st Battalion, 10 Marine Regiment, 2d Marine Division and Combat Logistics Battalion 8 marched in the parade to reaffirm our commitment to our nation’s veterans.
“It was an honor for the Marines of CLB-8 to be selected to march in the Warsaw Veterans Day Parade in front of countless supporters,” said 2nd Lt. Hunton Carroll, a combat engineer platoon commander with CLB-8. “The people of the town and the surrounding area lined the streets of the town and cheered us on as we marched through the streets.”
The parade kicked off with a color guard of Marines with Headquarters and Support Battalion, Marine Corps Installations – East leading the way as the rest of the parade followed them down the route.
“It was a very humbling experiencing,” said Carroll. “The purpose for having Marines march in this parade was to show respect for the veterans who have served in our nations armed forces and to honor the town's tradition of having an annual parade.”
The parade was recognized as the official North Carolina Veterans Day Parade in 2016 and is held on the first Saturday of November every year. This was the first parade some of these Marines have had the opportunity to march in.
“I have personally never done something like this before and it is definitely something I would look forward to doing again,” said Carroll. “I know all of the Marines who participated in the parade feel the same way as well.”
The Marines smiled and waved at onlookers as they marched down the parade route, shaking hands with attendees as they were thanked for their service and returning the gesture by thanking them for their support.
“I think it is important for people to understand the necessity for Marines to be able to go out to events like this and interact with civilians,” said Carroll. “It reminds the Marines that they have the support from the public and that they appreciate the sacrifices we make as Marines in service to this country.”