A weekend of events throughout Bristol paid tribute to fallen heroes who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.
The Memorial Day weekend festivities began Friday at 1:30 p.m. at Colt Andrews School, where students sang patriotic songs. On Saturday morning, members of the Bristol Veterans Council traveled throughout the town laying wreaths at each of the 19 war memorials scattered around town, and they gathered for a memorial Mass Sunday morning at 9:30 at the Veterans Home on Metacom Avenue.
The highlight of the weekend, or course, was the annual Memorial Day Parade Monday at 9:30 a.m. The procession began at North Burial Ground, headed south on Hope Street, pausing at the VFW Hall, and continued on to the Bristol War Veterans Honor Roll Garden next to Town Hall. There, a wreath was laid in the garden and a cannon blast salute honored each of America’s 14 wars.
The parade featured the usual lineup of bands, color guards, veterans committees, firing squads and local, state and federal officials. Jack Barton, 93, an original member of the Army’s 10th Mountain Division during World War II, served as the chief marshall. The guest speaker was retired Coast Guard Officer Thomas J. Guthlein
The full parade lineup included:
- Bristol Police Department Color Guard
- Bristol Fire Department Color Guard
- Bristol Veterans Council
- Bristol Artillery Company and Firing Squad
- Mt. Hope High School Band and Chorus
- Colt-Andrews School students
- Bristol Coast Guard Station
- Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts
- Marine Color Guard
- Officer Training Command
- Naval Supply Corps School
- Colonial Navy of Massachusetts
- RI National Guard
- Red Cross Youths
- Front Line Ministry for Freedom
- Bristol Parks and Recreation Department
- Bristol Fire and Rescue vehicles