Goffstown: Residents line streets to remember fallen soldiers
GOFFSTOWN — Hundreds lined the streets from Goffstown High School to Westlawn Cemetery to commemorate Memorial Day on Monday.
The parade, which included Girl and Boy Scout troops, the Goffstown High School marching band and town and state officials, was led by a color guard of veterans from the American Legion's Wesley Wyman Post 16 of Goffstown.
The parade stopped for a prayer and wreath laying at the Charte Memorial, which was dedicated in December 2011 at the Wallace Road roundabout, the Main St. bridge, where a wreath was tossed into the Piscataquog River to honor those lost at sea, Town Hall, the Common and the cemetery where the group gathered at the Tomb of the Unknown.
American Legion chaplain Gary Cloutier took a moment to thank those who took a break from the barbecues and the unofficial kickoff to summer to pause and celebrate the true meaning of the day.
Young and old alike sat along the side of the roads in the parade that has become an annual tradition, waving flags and taking a moment to pause and reflect on the American soldiers who paid the ultimate price for freedom.
Walter and Julie Malik, who moved to Goffstown last year from Hooksett, attended the parade for the first time this year.
“One thing I like about Goffstown is that these things happen,” said Walter, a Vietnam War veteran.
“It's important to get people to understand the meaning of Memorial Day,” he said.
A highlight of the day for Louis “Jody” Cizmadia, the vice commander of the American Legion, was meeting Charles Anderson, who fought in World War II.
After a brief conversation, Cizmadia, a Vietnam War veteran, discovered he and Anderson had both served on the USS Essex, 20 years apart.
“That was absolutely amazing,” Cizmadia said.
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