The service and sacrifices of military veterans will be honored with a special parade and other events in downtown Louisville on Veteran’s Day, Friday, Nov. 11, Mayor Greg Fischer announced Monday in a press release.
The Massing of the Colors and Veterans Day Parade will start at 11:11 a.m., the exact time the Armistice took effect to end World War I in 1918. The parade and other activities will take place along historic West Main from 4th to 9th Streets, ending at the Frazier History Museum.
The parade will be led by the 113th Army Band from Fort Knox, followed by a Joint Services Color Guard.
“This special observance is the least we can do to honor the dedication and service that our military veterans have made and continue to make every day,” Fischer said. “I hope all Louisvillians will come out and help salute these brave men and women.”
Louisville’s Veteran’s Day observance was organized by a planning committee chaired by retired Major General Carl D. Black, USAF. “This truly is a once in a lifetime opportunity to pay tribute to American veterans and active duty members of the Armed Services,” Black said. “11:11 AM on the 11th day of the 11th month of the 11th year won’t happen again, and I am honored to chair this committee.”
Just before the start of the Massing of the Colors and parade, an assortment of military planes will fly over the parade route.
Special bleacher seating is being installed for veterans and their families who aren’t able to walk the entire route. They will be invited to join the parade after the last unit and follow it to the end.
A special display will be installed in front of the Frazier Museum Nov. 5 - 12 – Kentucky’s “40 et 8” boxcar, on loan from the Kentucky Railway Museum in New Haven. The “40 et 8” boxcar was sent to Kentucky by people in France in 1949 in gratitude for America’s donation of food and life necessities in 1948; each state received a “40 et 8” car. Kentucky’s is one of 35 cars known to remain in existence.
In connection with the “40 et 8” display, volunteers will serve as docents to explain the “40 et 8” program and the car’s history. Members of the Frazier staff will record oral histories from visitors on Nov. 11. The Museum also will provide reduced admission to the public and free admission to veterans and active military members that day. A Supply Drive for the Troops to collect “care packages” for military personnel serving overseas will kick off that day at the Museum.
Attractions along Main Street, including the Louisville Slugger Museum and Bat Factory and the Louisville Science Center, will offer special programs or discounted admission on Nov. 11.
Other features of the Massing of the Colors and Veterans Parade include displays of restored military equipment provided by the KILROY and 14th Armored Preservation Groups as well as displays by sponsors and veterans’ service organizations.
All expenses of the Massing of the Colors and Veterans Day Parade are underwritten by sponsorships, led by UAW Local 862 and Ford Louisville Assembly Plant and Park Community Federal Credit Union. Other sponsors include: UPS, AAA of Kentucky, First Capital Bank of Kentucky, Grand Masonic Lodge of Kentucky, Highland Funeral Home, Kentucky Masonic Homes, Kosair Charities, Louisville Convention and Visitors Bureau, Louisville Scottish Rite, M&M Cartage Company, National Guard Association of Kentucky (NGAKY); Enlisted Association of the National Guard of KY (EANGKY); VisionWorks LLC, Accent Marketing, Miller/Coors Beer and The Geek Squad.