GREENPOINT, Brooklyn (PIX11) – War veterans, community groups and children marched through the streets of Greenpoint, Brooklyn in the community’s 14th annual Memorial Day Parade.
The parade stepped off Sunday morning from the St. Stanislaus Memorial American Legion Post, proceeded along Manhattan Avenue to St. Anthony’s Church, where a memorial mass was celebrated, and then returned to the Post.
This year, two World War II veterans from the neighborhood—Michael Cupac, who turns 96 on June 18, and 93-year-old Gerald Cardinal–were honored for their service.
Cardinal was thrilled to be the parade’s Grand Marshal.
“The commander of the legion, he called me up and he said ‘how would you like to be the grand marshal.’ I did flips,” said Cardinal who also talked about the significance of Memorial Day.
“It’s not for barbecues, it’s not for shopping,” he said. “It’s for thinking about the men and women who died to save us, to keep us free.”
“It’s very inspiring actually to see someone of age wanting to get their information and experience out to us,” said ROTC member and parade participant, Wilber Valencia. “It’s what really means the most to us.”