Worthington News

93rd Memorial Day parade to feature nearly 100 units

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The 2013 Memorial Day parade will step off at 10 a.m. Monday, May 27.

This will be the 93rd annual parade, which is sponsored each year by the Leasure-Blackston Post 239 of the American Legion.

As usual, the parade will leave the post home on East Granville Road at Morning Street and follow a route west to High Street and then south to the Walnut Grove Cemetery.

With nearly 100 units, the parade is said to be the biggest in central Ohio. It includes bands, community groups, cars, clowns, military vehicles and other attractions.

Fewer active military units and no military flyovers will be involved this year because the military has cut back on community events with the pending sequester, said Joe Hart, the parade's grand marshal who was in charge of arranging for military participation.

Also, the military did not provide a speaker for the service at the mound at the Walnut Grove Cemetery. The service immediately follows the parade and usually features a speaker and chaplain from the active military.

This year, former Worthington Police Chief Michael Mauger will be the speaker, and Worthington resident Don Pendell will be chaplain.

Mauger enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in 1968. He served in Vietnam in 1969 and was assigned to Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 5th Marine regiment, 1st Marine Division. His combat base, An Hoa, was in the Quang Nam province, approximately 20 miles southwest of Da Nang.

Mauger joined the Worthington Division of Police in September 1970 and was a police officer for 40 years. He served as sergeant, lieutenant and captain until 2002, when he was named chief. He retired in 2011.

Pendell was a U.S. Army Chaplain in Korea in 1953. He graduated from College of Wooster as a cheerleader, barber and English literature major.

In 1951, he taught English at College Cevenol, Le Chambon, Haute Loire, France, returning to Princeton, New Jersey, for his theological degree.

He was a three-time winner on the Ted Mack Amateur Hour TV show in 1954 and toured with Pat Boone and others and performed for President Eisenhower.

Pendell has been active in the community and has taught classes on the Civil War and U.S. presidents at the senior center.

The Memorial Day celebration actually begins Sunday, May 26, when thousands of poppies will be put on the graves of veterans at local cemeteries.

At 6 a.m. Monday, May 27, the flag will be raised to half staff and a rifle salute and cannon firing will be performed on the Village Green.

The rifle salute and flag raising will follow at the Worthington fire station, at all nearby cemeteries and at the Veterans Memorial Building and the American Legion Hall.

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