[Note: The following press release was issued on behalf of the VFW Post 653 in New Canaan.]
The Town of New Canaan and the Howard M. Bossa and Peter C. Langenus Post 653 of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States are pleased to announce plans for a traditional New Canaan Memorial Day Parade on Monday, May 29th, and Memorial Day Ceremony following the parade at Lakeview Cemetery.
Each year we gather to remember with gratitude and honor the proud men and women who gave their lives while serving in the U.S. Armed Forces to protect and preserve a life of freedom for all Americans.
All residents are invited to attend the parade and ceremony.
This year’s parade will begin at 9:30 a.m. at St. Mark’s Church on Oenoke Ridge Road and returns to its former route on lower Main Street.
This year, the VFW selected John F. McLane to act as the parade’s Grand Marshall. Mr. McLane will also serve as this year’s keynote speaker.
The VFW Post is led by Francis “Mike” McGlinn as Commander. Serving with him are Russ Kimes, Senior Vice Commander, Aaron Hall, Junior Vice Commander, John McLane, Quartermaster, and Brian Van der Heyden, Chaplin. The Post meets at the Masonic Lodge at 231 Main Street.
Mr. McGlinn, who served as an Artillery Officer during the Vietnam War, commented, “Memorial Day is a great opportunity for all of us to remember everyone who made the ultimate sacrifice in military service for our country.”
The parade will include the following groups, preceded by the Exchange Club which will hand out flags to the crowd:
MEMORIAL DAY PARADE LINE OF MARCH
- Color Guard
- Grand Marshall
- Town Band
- Town Officials and Clergy
- Board of Education
- Police Department
- US Naval Sea Cadets Corps
- Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR)
- Girl Scouts, Brownies, Daisies and the Service Unit
- Knights of Columbus
- Boy Scouts & Cub Scouts
- New Canaan EMS
- Mount Kisco Scottish Bagpipers
- Fire Department
- Vista Fire Department
- CERT – Community Emergency Response Team
The groups above will march into Lakeview Cemetery and attend the ceremony. The remaining groups in the Parade are:
- New Canaan Mounted Troop
- New Canaan High School Band
- New Canaan Baseball
- New Canaan Softball
- School of Rock
- Staying Put in New Canaan
- New Canaan Beautification League
- Waveny Lifecare Network
- New Canaan Men’s Club
- Town of New Canaan Department of Public Works (DPW)
All veterans, their family and friends, are welcome to join us for a light luncheon at the Masonic Lodge immediately after the ceremony at Lakeview.
The keynote speaker for the Memorial Day ceremony is John F. McLane. John has been an entrepreneur, operating executive, and advisor to firms involved with information technology, financial services, publishing, and information content. He has directed more than fifteen corporate turnarounds, and he has been involved with over one hundred new ventures.
John was President of the service arm of Citicorp’s Global Insurance Division and Managing Director of Citicorp Commercial Real Estate Division. Along with Don Wilson, the founding President of LEXIS & NEXIS, John established Wilson & McLane, Inc., a leading boutique. His early career with decision support systems at IBM/SBC led to heading sales and marketing at CompuServe.
John entered the army as a private in September, 1966. After basic and advanced training at Ft. Dix, he later graduated from infantry officer candidate school at Ft. Benning, GA and was commissioned as a second lieutenant on July, 1967. He then went through months of further training for jungle, biological, chemical and radiological warfare. From January, 1968 to January, 1969 John served in Vietnam with the First Cavalry Division: as an infantry platoon leader, then on battalion staff, and finally as an infantry company commander. He was promoted to captain several months early. John was awarded the bronze star, two army commendation medals, and two air medals, plus the combat infantry badge, the Vietnam campaign medal, and the Vietnam service medal.
John received his BS and MBA from Michigan State University. He competed in national championships in both soccer and wrestling. John is a former board member of The MSU Research Foundation, Spartan Innovations, and MBI International. He is currently on the advisory board of Michigan Rise (a pre-seed fund) and the boards of Marriott’s Royal Palms and Calais at Pelican Bay. Over the years, John has held multiple leadership positions with the VFW. He was a USSF referee for over 50 years and a referee assessor. John and his wife, Sandy, live part-time in Naples, FL, and New Canaan, CT, where they raised three children and were active with their church and youth activities.
Mr. McLane is honored to be the keynote speaker on this solemn day and adds “I’m not just accepting this honor for myself, but on behalf of all the guys in the local VFW, and especially the guy that helped hold the post together for years, Peter Langenus.”
Rev. Matt Curry, Senior, Pastor, the United Methodist Church of New Canaan, will offer Invocation and Benediction at the ceremony.
In the event of heavy rain, a parade cancelation notice will be posted on the Town website at www.newcanaan.info. In the event of parade cancelation, a Memorial Ceremony will be conducted at Town Hall at 10:00 am.