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Carbon County Veterans Day parade set for Sunday

Published November 09. 2018 11:59AM

The Carbon County Veterans Council announced the annual Carbon County Veterans Day parade will be held on Sunday in Lansford, with a rain date of Nov. 18.

This year’s parade is hosted by the Lansford American Legion Post 123.

The grand marshal

The grand marshal this year is Joseph “Joey” Nichols, who served in the United States Marine Corps for 19 months.

He enlisted in the Marines in September 1968 and trained at Parris Island, South Carolina. He had Infantry Training Regiment at Camp Geiger, North Carolina, Combat Engineer Training at Camp Lejeune at Court House Bay, North Carolina, and then jungle training at Camp Pendleton, California.

Nichols left for Vietnam on WestPac orders on Sept. 7, 1969, landed in De Nang Air Base and then reported to the 9th Engineer battalion and spent the next 11½ months on Hill 10 near Thang Bien.

During this time, he volunteered for Operation Victory Dragon on Barrier Island, South Vietnam, for a land-clearing operation for two months.

He met and served with Pfc. Charles Newman of Pittsburgh. Newman lost his life during OVD.

In total, Nichols did more than 200 mine sweeps in 12 months.

Lance Cpl. Nichols returned to the United States on Aug. 16, 1970.

In 2010, he traveled to Pittsburgh to meet Newman’s mother, Anna Mary Newman, and to visit her son’s grave site. He visited occasionally with Anna Mary until her death in 2014.

Joey served at the Lansford American Legion Post 123 as commander from 1998 through 1999. He was also instrumental in building the Veterans Monument at Lansford Kennedy Park, along with several other American Legion Post 123 members.

Nichols is married to the former Andrea Palkendo for 14 years and has two stepchildren, Jolene and Roderick; and a grandson, Roderick V. His parents are Dr. and Mrs. Martin Nichols. He also has two brothers, Matthew and Martin. He resides in the White Bear section of Summit Hill.

Parade route

Nate Krajcirik, commander, American Legion Post 123, wants people to know that the best place on the route to observe the parade will be at the business district on West Ridge Street.

A free cash drawing, with the top prize of $250, will take place in front of the American Legion immediately following the parade. Tickets, one per adult, are free and will be handed out at the start of the parade.

In addition, free American flags will be distributed to children near the American Legion while supplies last.

Parade participants are required to register, before arriving at their designated division, on East Bertsch Street at the former location of St. Ann’s Church, 8 E. Bertsch St. Please observe the posted signs.

Lineups start forming at 11:30 a.m. and all participants are asked to be in place by 1:15 p.m. The parade will start promptly at 1:30.

The parade, which forms around the Panther Valley Football Stadium, will step off, moving east on Bertsch Street, turning north onto Chestnut Street, west onto East Patterson Street, north on to Springgarden Street, and then west onto Ridge Street. Drivers can anticipate some temporary detours and temporary no-parking areas.

Division 1

Lansford Police Department with Chief Soberick & Mayor Romankow; American Legion Post 123 — Color Guard; 100th Anniversary of the American Legion; Grand Marshal — Joseph Nichols; Schuylkill-Carbon Marine Corps League — Color Guard; Panther Valley JROTC; Panther Valley High School Marching Band; Nesquehoning United Veterans Organization; Nesquehoning UVO Auxiliary Poppy Queen & King; Vietnam Veterans Organization of Carbon County; Navy Club Of Carbon County Ship 260 NCUSA; Lansford Borough Council; Panther Valley Girls Volleyball; Panther Valley Scout Service Unit 310; Panther Valley Cub Scouts Pack 765; Coaldale Tigers Traveling Baseball Team; Anthracite Little League & Softball Association; Krajcirik’s Automotive & Towing; Lansford Fire Company; Summit Hill Fire Company; Coaldale Fire Company; New Columbus Fire Company; Hauto Fire Company.

Division 2

Palmerton United Veterans Organization Color Front; Palmerton Area High School Marching Band; Palmerton UVO — Miss Poppy & Mascot; Palmerton UVO — USMC Van; Palmerton UVO — Jack Mack; Palmerton UVO — World War II Jeep — Plechavy; Larry Wanamaker at Abe Lincoln; Girl Scout Service Group 33412; Boy Scout Troop 20; Boy Scout Troop 209; American Legion Post 16 — Cargo Truck; Palmerton Fire Department; Aquashicola Lower Towamensing Volunteer Fire Co.; Bowmanstown Volunteer Fire Co.

Division 3

American Legion Post 304 Color Guard; Jim Thorpe Olympian Marching Band; Carbon County Commissioner’s Bill O’Gurek & Tom Gerhard; Carbon County Veterans Affairs; American Legion Post 304 Auxiliary; State Representative Doyle Heffley; Carbon County Republican Committee; Carbon County District Attorney; Carbon County Sheriffs Office; Chris Lukasevich — Victory in 2019; Boy Scout Troop 138; USSV1 Pocono Base US Submarine Veterans; Stan Zabo’s Antique Automobiles; Diligent Fire Company No. 3; Lake Harmony Volunteer Fire Company

Division 4

Lehighton United Veterans Organization Color Guard; Lehighton Area High School Marching Band; American Legion Post 314 Auxiliary; Carbon County Fair Queen & Court; Lehighton Area Girl Scouts; Boy Scout Troop 82; Valor Clinic Foundation; Yenser’s Tree Farm; Alex Shereba Classic 1957 Chevy; Perseverance Jazz Band; The Classic Car Gang; Lehighton Ambulance Association; Carbon County Commissioner Wayne Nothstein; Lehighton Fire Department; Mahoning Valley Fire Company

Division 5

American Legion Post 316; Weatherly Area High School Band; Gregory A. Badger — Calliope; Jukebox Cruisers Car Club; Rajah Shrine Anglers Club; EGW Wrestling; Tamaqua Salvation Army; Forks of the Delaware Tin Lizzies; American Legion Post 170 — Military Truck; KME/REV Corporation

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