The steady drizzle on Memorial Day did not dampen the patriotic spirits of people who came out to cheer on Watertown’s annual parade on Monday.
Featured speaker Cynthia Talbert, a retired captain in the U.S. Navy, reminded those at the ceremony after the parade that Memorial Day weekend is not all about cookouts, sales and a long weekend.
“I am reminded of the simple inscription on the Korean War Memorial – Freedom is Not Free,” Talbert said. “It is important to remember why we are here. We hope every war puts and end to all wars, sadly that is not the reality.”
Finding a way to inspire men and women to join the military is important, said Talbert. She saw how veterans visited schools in Watertown and said that some of the children may one day volunteer to join the military.
Talbert moved to Watertown after a career in the Navy which took her around the world, including to Iceland, London, Italy and Japan.
“This was the first time in my life I chose where to live,” Talbert said. “I moved here to be close to my family.”
Watertown Veterans Agent Mark Comeiro noted that Talbert was the first woman to make the move from the lowest rank in the Navy to captain – which is the equivalent of a colonel in the Army or Air Force.
The parade featured veterans groups from in and around Watertown, a pipe band and the Watertown Police and Fire Departments. The family of fallen Watertown Firefighter Joseph Toscano lead the Fire Department and carried a banner saying “Thank You Watertown.”
Other groups included Watertown Youth Sports teams and Watertown Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts and the Watertown Daisy troop.
See more photos in the slideshow below