Lucedale Veterans Day parade
Photo courtesy of the City of Lucedale
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Veterans’ Day Parade Set for November 5 in Lucedale

Lucedale’s 7th Annual Veterans’ Day Parade will roll at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 5.

The late Kimble Cochran has been named Grand Marshal and his family will lead the parade in his memory. Cochran, a Vietnam War veteran, lost his battle with cancer on June 6, 2022.

Cochran formerly served as Commander of Grantham Howell American Legion Post 53, which sponsors the parade each year. Cochran was its commander for six years. A highly decorated veteran, Cochran earned the Vietnam Service Medal with Bronze Service Star, the Army Commendation Medal with “V” Device and the Combat Infantryman Badge.

Cochran was drafted into the U.S. Army at age 19. His basic and infantry training took place at Fort Polk, La. After completing his training, he was sent to Chu Lai, Vietnam where he served the 23rd Americal Division of the U.S. Army. He did patrol three to five days at a time in the mountains of South Vietnam traveling by helicopter. He also participated in the Easter Offensive which took place March 30, 1972. On that date North Vietnam attacked South Vietnam on three fronts. Much of the U.S. troops were out of South Vietnam when the North Vietnamese invaded. When the Easter Offensive was halted in October that year, North Vietnam controlled much of South Vietnam along South Vietnam’s border with Laos and Cambodia.

All veterans are invited to participate in the upcoming parade through downtown Lucedale. The lineup will include a float for each branch of service. Churches, civic groups and individuals are also invited to participate. Rules, regulations and entry registration are available at Lucedale City Hall. All floats, groups or vehicle must be registered to participate in the parade. Candy throws will be allowed.

Lineup will begin at 10 a.m. at L.C. Hatcher Elementary School.  The parade route will travel from the school to Winter St. and will flow north on Winter Street to Main St. where it will turn right, heading east. The parade will end at Virginia St. just past Main Drug Company. The event is sponsored by American Legion Post 53, the Post Auxiliary and the City of Lucedale. A reception for veterans and their families will immediately follow the parade. It will be at the American Legion Building located at 130 Beaver Dam Rd., Lucedale, Miss.

For more information contact Kirk Dyer at 601-508-8551, Nancy Dyer at 601-818-5678 or City Hall at 601-947-2082.

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Written by Nancy Jo Maples

Nancy Jo Maples is an award-winning journalist who has written about Mississippi people and places for more than 30 years. A former daily staff news reporter for the Mississippi Press, she currently writes for various media and teaches communication at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College. Reach her at [email protected]

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