NORTHAMPTON, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - Veteran's Day parades will be held across western Massachusetts tomorrow, except in one Hampshire County community.

For 99 years, there was a Veteran's Day parade in Northampton, but tomorrow, for the first time in decades, there won't be.

Brad LeVay is the president of the Veterans Council in Northampton, the same group that organizes the town's annual Veteran's Day parade.

He says that he's devastated that they had no choice, but to cancel this year.

"It bothered me," LeVay tells us. "I hated to do this. I really did. It's just hard to get anyone out here to the parade. It's not only the people in the parade. It's the audience."

LeVay tells Western Mass News that participation has been the biggest challenge.

"World War II veterans can't walk," continued LeVay. "I'm a Korean veteran. I have trouble with my legs. I can't walk, and it just comes down [to] we're getting older."

LeVay says that the younger veterans aren't getting as involved, and he's not really sure the reason why.

In addition to veterans, he says it's even been challenging getting high school bands to participate.

Based on interest, they would be lucky if they even saw 100 people attend.

"It's been done for so many years," stated LeVay. "It bothers me. It really, really bothers me to think we couldn't get someone to come out here."

LeVay said that, although the parade was cancelled for this year, they are hopeful that it will be able to make a return in the future.

Copyright 2018 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation).  All rights reserved.


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