William S. Richey

William S. Richey is the Grand Marshall for the 2021 Claremore Veterans Day Parade

High School bands, motorcycles, military units, church groups, Claremore Veterans Center, and more are all gearing up for the Claremore Veterans Day Parade November 11.

Beginning at exactly 11:11 a.m. at the Expo Center, the parade will march down Will Rogers Blvd., finishing up at the Gazebo.

Applications for the parade can be downloaded from the VFW website located at www.claremorevetsparade.com or pick up a copy at MSM Payne Funeral Home at 102 W. 5th St, Claremore; The Gun Museum on JM Davis Blvd., or Claremore’s JR Hooper VFW located at 1717 DuPont, behind the courthouse.

The deadline for all entries is October 31. Any entry received after that date will be put at the end of the parade. All singles or groups wishing to be in the parade must have a parade application filled out in order to participate and must include an email address.

Veterans Day is kicked off with the annual Flag Retirement Ceremony, this year set to be held at 9 a.m. at McKinney-Montgomery American Legion on Highway 88 in Claremore. The Claremore High School JrROTC will be providing the honors.

This year’s Grand Marshal is William S. Richey, U.S. Navy veteran of eight years, who served during Vietnam aboard several aircraft carriers, including the USS Constellation, Ranger and was on the Forestall when it exploded due to a misfired missile from one of the airplanes. There he spent days fighting the ensuring fires. He was an Aviation Electronics specialist, keeping all of the electronic systems on the airplanes operating properly. He also served as equipment salvage specialist, when a plane was shot down he and his crew went in to remove top secret equipment. Seldom did the planes go down in friendly areas. He is also the commander of the Joe Ronnie Hooper Memorial VFW and has served in that capacity since 2012. During that time he supervised many improvement projects at the Post that has made it one of the finest VFW Posts in the nation.

After the parade, a Thanksgiving luncheon will be held at the VFW for all Veterans and their families. This luncheon is provided at no cost, and is provided by the cooperation of the VFW, American Legion and the Rogers County DAV.

Every Veterans Day the three groups take great pride in feeding about 300 people. Turkey, ham, traditional dressing, green beans, salad, mashed potatoes and gravy and a host of deserts will all be available.

For more information, contact parade coordinator Candy at 918.342.5730 mornings at the post or 918.829.9668 in the afternoon or evening hours.

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