May 1, 2017 – West Bend, WI – A note of thanks to all of those who helped organize West Bend’s Loyalty Day Parade and to those who took part in the event.
“Thank you for making this once-in-a-lifetime event for our community such a success,” wrote volunteer organizer Victoria Lewis.
The event put the Wisconsin Loyalty Day Celebration and the City of West Bend in the history books.
The parade featured two WWII veterans Charles Brady, 92, from Beaver Dam and Howie Knox, 97, from Cedar Ridge.
Born in a tee pee on an Indian reservation in Staples, Minnesota, Brady enlisted in the service when he was 15 years old. “I told my folks if they didn’t sign for me I’d go down the road,” he said. “My folks finished milking and they already had two boys in the service already but they signed my paperwork anyway.”
Brady took basic training in Camp Hood, Texas. “I was a driver on an M-18 Hellcat which was an American tank destroyer used in World War II,” he said. “I enlisted in the Army and then got out of the Army and went into the Marine Corp.”
Brady served from 1939 – 1948. After getting out of the service Brady spent his career building miniature hay wagons and cartoon characters.
The Loyalty Day Parade also featured local celebrities such as Grace Braeger and her 57 Lady
– a Chevy Bel Air that’s been in numerous car shows and has been recognized across the U.S.
At Regner Park veterans and dignitaries gathered for the noon program which featured guest speakers including VFW Commander Brian Duffy, West Bend Mayor Kraig Sadownikow, and Gov. Scott Walker.
to see the speeches and program featuring the River City Irregulars and students from Fair Park Elementary.