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St. Lawrence County communities will pay tribute to veterans

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Communities throughout St. Lawrence County will hold Veterans Day observances today.

In Massena, the annual parade sponsored by Amvets Post 4 will kick off at 10:45 a.m. at the American Legion on East Orvis Street and end at the Massena Fire Station on Andrews Street, where a service will be held.

“We go to the fire hall because of the weather,” said Amvets Commander Francis E. “Bud” Byington.

Following the service, which is expected to begin at about 11 a.m., Mr. Byington said, all veterans are invited to return to the Amvets post for a complimentary luncheon.

While the parade may not include any bands or floats, Mr. Byington said, its marchers are far more important than any band or float.

“It’s all veterans,” he said. “We do the same thing every year, but we think it’s important for veterans to be recognized.”

Mr. Byington continued: “This is Veterans Day. It’s a day for veterans to thank themselves and each other and for those who were not veterans to thank those who served.”

In other communities:

n Heuvelton’s Amvets Post 199 will have a wreath-laying ceremony at 11 a.m. in front of the Oswegatchie Town Hall.

“They do it every year since 1997,” said Thomas L. Lavigne, a bartender at the Amvets.

After the ceremony, there will be a public lunch in the Amvets building at 107 State St.

n The American Legion in the village of Waddington will have a ceremony at 11 a.m. The ceremony will “not be more than 15 minutes,” said Commander Michael S. McIntosh. He will give a short speech and prayers will be said.

Following the ceremony, the American Legion will host a meal open to the community at its 23 Fenton St. location.

Mr. McIntosh said the bar will have deals for the occasion. Anyone, not just veterans, who arrives will get the first round free.

After that, for veterans, beers will be $1 and mixed drinks will be $1.50. Amy Rivera will sing at the meal.

Community members, including firefighters, will serve the meal, Mr. McIntosh said.

n The VFW Post in Canton will raise the flag at 11 a.m. to mark the day.

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