Pete Graven (Contributed photo)

Memorial Day Parade Set For May 27

Port Washington’s annual Memorial Day Parade will be held on Monday, May 27, 2024, with the step off starting at 10:00 a.m. at Campus Drive, and finishing at the Sunset Park Bandshell, where the Memorial Day remembrance will be held starting after the parade.

The parade is sponsored by the American Legion Post 509, and this year, the Legion has chosen Pete Graven as the Grand Marshal. A 1959 graduate of Notre Dame, Pete served three and a half years as a naval line officer during the Viet Nam era.

He served as Executive Officer aboard MSTS Troop Transport Protector and trained South Vietnam boat crew on Patrol Craft Escort, Crestview. The Crestview was donated to the South Vietnam Navy in 1961.

Pete also served as Engineering Officer aboard Radar ship Protector which was the first ship sent to Key West during the ‘Bay of Pigs’ action. It was responsible for saving six American civilians who were drowning while escaping Cuba during the aborted invasion.

He returned to civilian life and served as Commander for the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 6, involved in boating safety and responsible for search and rescue operations in Western Long Island Sound.

American Legion Commander Fred Falconer indicated that all veterans are welcome to join in parading whether they are a member of the Legion or of the VFW Chapter 1817(Veterans of Foreign Wars). Both organizations will be placing American Flags on Sunday, May 26 at Nassau Knolls. Anyone interested in helping place some 700 flags at veterans’ gravesites, can meet at 9:00 a.m. Volunteers are asked to give just two hours to honor the fallen.

Volunteer organizer Vic Constantino indicated ‘We have veterans from as far back as the Civil War’. Certainly more hands make light work!

—Submitted by the
Memorial Day Parade Committee

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