Saturday morning, a parade will be held to honor veterans in the Bowling Green community.
Organizations throughout Bowling Green have submitted their floats and have begun planning for the parade.
Two veteran focused organizations at WKU will be participating in the parade this year and marching together. The Student Veteran Alliance and Veterans Upward Bound are both organizations that are focused on supporting veterans in their lives after serving in the military.
David Angle, an adult education specialist and retired veteran, has been a part of Veterans Upward Bound for eleven years. Veterans Upward Bound’s mission is to help veterans to become involved in post-secondary education.
“That’s really our main focus,” Angle said. “Get veterans into post-secondary education and hopefully see that they succeed.”
Angle commented on how his organization is not commonly known within the community of veterans.
“You can’t believe the number of people I work with in the VA healthcare system- that I see because I’m a veteran-that have never heard of Veterans Upward Bound,” Angle said.
With the parade on Saturday, Angle hopes to generate exposure for the organization.
“It’s to give ourselves exposure to the public because that’s the only way we’re going to get recruits,” Angle said.
Angle explained that the program is grant-funded. Their grant requires them to serve 125 veterans per year. Angle said that in the past, it was easier to recruit veterans to their organization and encourage them to further their education. Now, he said, the economy is better so it’s easier for veterans to go straight into the work force, making it harder to find prospective students.
“That’s another thing the parade does, again, it gives us exposure to the community. There might be somebody out there, standing on the curb, watching us march by that goes, ‘I wonder what that program is.’”
Angle served as a sergeant in the army and also benefitted from Veterans Upward Bound’s services.
“I went through this program myself, so when I got hired, it was a real honor for me to be giving back to the program that got me into Western, that got me a degree…I’m giving back because this program gave to me,” Angle said.
Angle commented on Veteran’s Day and its importance in society.
“There’s a lot of people that take their freedoms too casually. There’s other people out there that have sacrificed their lives so people could have those freedoms here in the United States. That’s what Veterans Day is for…the fact is, it’s people fighting to maintain our democracy- the things this country was built on.”
Angle believes the parade is also an opportunity to show support for Veterans.
“I really feel like people need to get out there and honor those folks. Not only those that gave their lives, but those that have served their country, no matter how they served it.”
The parade will begin at 10 a.m. on Nov. 4 and will start at Circus Square Park. Angle encourages everyone to join Veterans Upward Bound in their march.
Reporter Laurel Deppen can be reached at 270-745-2655 and [email protected]