Veterans Day is approaching and a variety of events are set for it, including the Etowah Veterans Parade on Nov. 6.

According to McMinn County Veteran Services Officer Susan Peglow, the Etowah event is currently scheduled to start around 3 p.m.

“We are very excited about it,” Peglow expressed. “A couple of the veterans groups have been getting together and we have actually built a small plywood tank and it is kind of neat looking.”

The parade is planned to feature the McMinn County Veteran Honor Guard, Boy Scouts Honor Guard, floats and classic cars.

There will be a dinner after the Etowah parade that will be free to veterans and their families.

“This is all currently planned but not definitive as we will iron that out over the next couple of weeks,” Peglow noted. “We want everybody to come out and honor our veterans because that is the big thing, honoring our veterans.”

Other Veterans Day events that are currently scheduled include the AMVETS ceremony that will be held at AMVETS Post 100 in Etowah, the VFW hosting a ceremony at 11 a.m. in Athens, an honor guard posting of colors at McMinn County High School and potentially more.

“Usually with the schools we are booked, however with COVID we aren’t sure who is allowing outsiders in so I will be reaching out to other schools soon,” Peglow stated.

Peglow expressed her belief that these events are important for both the veterans and civilians.

“Every liberty that everyone has whether it is to get up and go to school, to go to work or not go to work, even the benefits that you draw from the government is made possible by veterans,” Peglow said. “Veterans fought in every war. They fought in the Revolutionary War against England for the freedom to govern ourselves and they have fought in the most recent war to give people that same freedom. If you are a girl you have the freedom to get up and go to school in the United States but that is not necessarily true in Afghanistan or Iraq, so every freedom that you enjoy in the United States of America you can thank a veteran for that.”

Peglow would like to see more veteran-centric events to give honor to those who have served.

“Veterans are just so important and it is like you are standing in the presence of heroes,” she expressed.

“If Captain America was real and you had the chance to meet him, wouldn’t you want to? This is someone who not only talked the talk but walked the walk and they did what they had to do for their country.”

She believes it is a blessing for her to be able to work with veterans on a daily basis.

“I would like to shout out Mac Henderson who is responsible for me having my current job,” Peglow announced. “Another reason this is important is because we don’t know when the next war will be. We don’t know who the next person is that is going to be protecting us so that we can keep these liberties and freedoms that we enjoy, so teach your children, teach them how important it is to serve and honor their country.”

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