Gloversville parade honors veterans

GLOVERSVILLE – People lined downtown streets Saturday morning to show their appreciation for local veterans during the city’s annual Veterans Day parade.

“This is really a privilege, just to see the people thinking of the veterans,” said Tony Barone, a retired Navy veteran who showed up to watch the parade. “It’s always an honor to come to this event.”

Barone served from 1958-62 on the USS Wadleigh. His ship was stationed at Newport, R.I., but he traveled widely, including to the Mediterranean, England and Ireland, during his years of service.

Saturday’s parade started around 9:30 a.m. from the area of North Main Street and Eighth Avenue. It continued south on North Main Street, west on West Fulton Street and north on Frontage Road. The celebration concluded at City Hall with a ceremony.

In addition to veterans, some of the groups in the four-division parade included the fire departments of Gloversville, Sammonsville, Johnstown, Caroga Lake, Rockwood-Garoga-Lassellsville, Berkshire, Mayfield, Northville, Pleasant Square, Meco and Sir William Johnson, Boy and Girl scouts, the Ephratah-St. Johnsville Middle School Band, the Gloversville High School Band, the Tri-County Militia and the Veterans Council.

Staff Sgt. Cory Goodspeed, who serves in the Army, was among those who showed up to watch the parade.

He said he’s honored to be in the Army.

“I originally joined for college money and to help with the wars,” he said. “But after serving for 12 years, I’ve gotten a real sense of honor.”

Goodspeed, a Fort Johnson native, has deployed twice to Iraq. He said Saturday’s parade meant a lot to him.

“You walk around here and you see guys from World War II, Korea, Vietnam … I mean half the guys here have served in combat somewhere. It means a lot. A lot of these guys sacrificed a lot. A lot of these guys have lost friends,” Goodspeed said.

Parade spectators such as Michael Young of Gloversville expressed appreciation for the veterans.

“We go to every parade they do in Gloversville,” Young said. “But my stepdad is a retired veteran, so this parade means more to me because I feel good honoring what he did.”

Young’s stepfather, Butch Horning, who served in the Army from 1969-71, said the parade means “everything” to him.

“I come every year,” he said. “It feels great to be recognized.”

Young said he’s trying to follow in Horning’s footsteps and enlist in the National Guard.

The parade also attracted many children who scrambled to pick up candy thrown from the fire trucks.

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