WASHINGTON, DC -- The 2012 National Memorial Day Parade Presented by Boeing will include the very first special public tribute in the nation's capital to the Iraq War generation. All Iraq veterans and active duty military are encouraged to participate in honor the sacrifices of their fallen comrades. The Parade will take place at 2 p.m. May 28 on Constitution Avenue in Washington, DC.
President Obama announced the end of the Iraq conflict at the end of December 2011. However, with troops still deployed in Afghanistan, government officials have decided against holding a traditional "welcome home" parade for Iraq war veterans in Washington or New York in the near future.
"With troops still deployed in harm's way it is imperative that we show our support and gratitude as a nation," said James C. Roberts, president of the American Veterans Center, which founded and organizes the parade. "Sadly, others in the country are not doing enough to honor these young men and women who have sacrificed family relationships, jobs, and economic stability to go off to fight for their country.
"As a Vietnam veteran myself, I saw first-hand the way my comrades were treated, and my reaction was, ‘never again.' The veterans of the Iraq war deserve an expression of gratitude from the American people. I ask that ALL veterans and active duty troops of the war come to our Nation's Capital to join us in honoring their sacrifice, and the sacrifice of the thousands who have been killed and wounded while in service to our country. "
Veterans of Iraq from around the country are invited to participate in the only major public parade in their honor in Washington and, more importantly, in honor of those who did not come home. The parade is partnering with Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) to extend this invitation to all veterans of the war who would like to take part in this very special tribute.
To learn how to participate, please visit the parade's website at www.nationalmemorialdayparade.com, or IAVA's website at http://iava.org/nmdp2012. Veterans and families of the fallen can also call 703-302-1012 ext. 227 to participate.
The 2012 National Memorial Day Parade will be televised nationwide; visit www.nationalmemorialdayparade.com for broadcast partners. The parade is founded organized by the American Veterans Center, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, and presented by Boeing.
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