The Nation’s Memorial Day Parade in Washington D.C., Monday May 28th, was another successful (and steamy) gathering and we greatly appreciate and thank all of the participants who turned out. The Camp and Chapter participants were: Rev. Richard Edgar, Camp Commander Jim Becker and his wife Carol, Adjutant JJ Smith, MOS&B member Bill Price and his wife Marsha, Ron Kirby, and our parade organizer, Bob Brown.
Memorial Day is the unofficial start of summer, however you could have thought it was summer on this day. It was humid and a sweltering 93 degrees, yet all persevered and their dedication to the cause cannot be doubted following this performance as compatriots gathered for the Annual National Capital Memorial Day Parade in Washington DC, which has the most attendance with the largest number of spectators. The parade started at 2:00 and at 3:00 the Parade halts for a moment of silence for the Soldiers of America who died in the Wars of the Past. We represent the Confederates, as they group military eras in chronological order in this parade. We followed the Mexican War soldiers. It was quite a sight for all to see, and we were there in force. We were in the area of the Reviewing Stand as Maryland presented the Colors and we were called to stop. The TV Camera was right in front of us as we stood there for the moment of silence, “Taps”, the fly over, and the singing of Amazing Grace. Wow, on national TV via FOX, we were front and center with the flags flying in a light breeze showing all in Washington the glory of the Confederate soldiers, generals, and Flags! We marched in Remembrance of the Confederate Soldier, and all can see that WE ARE A BAND OF BROTHERS!
Our participants included: The Civil War Eagles with Lee’s Lieutenants portraying Generals of the Confederate and Union Armies: Gen Gordon (Ron Cole), Gen Grant (Don McConnel), Gen Cooper (Drew Pallo), Gen Sherman (Jim Opdenaker), Gen Armistead (Dennis Cole), Gov William “Extra Billy” Smith (Dave Meisky), Gen Ewell (Chris Godart), Gen Early (Mike Sipes), Gen Gregg (Tony Virando), Capt Sally Thompkins (Rosie Thoburn), Laura Ratcliffe (Amy Beechler), Sherman Family (Chris, Rachel and Hannah Opdeneker), Jessica Godart, and Mark (friend of Capt Sally Thompkins dressed as a Confederate soldier)); Commander Ed Creasy with Holly Hueston on horseback and Brandon Mantell on manure clean-up; Maryland Line Field Music led by Joe Whitney (fife) and drummers Walt Mathers and Patrick Kelly; then our camp and banner followed by Frank Stringfellow Camp, SCV, with Commander David Stringfellow, Mike Shumaker, and Dan Fedorko; Maryland SCV and Color Guard led by Color Sergeant Ray Rooks with: John Zebelean, Mike Sipes, Craig Gotschall, and Bill Fronk; with Bowling Camp: Cmdr Bob Parker and Jim Dunbar; Order of the Confederate Rose: Liz Groszer; Trimble Camp: Maryland Div Cmdr Jay Barringer; Waddell Camp: Brandon Gehrt and Brian Gehrt; and Maryland Line Camp: Mike Hinton; and Breckenridge Carriage, driver Art Magner.
The Maryland Division SCV Color Guard is a period Color Guard that is patriotic and historic in its presentation of Confederate flags. The Color Guard was created in 2000 under the command of Color Sergeant Ray Rooks. The current Maryland Division Commander, Jay Barringer (bagpiper), is a proud member of the Color Guard