11:15 a.m. -- According to South Kingstown Patch, today's scheduled parade has been canceled.
A strong line of incoming thunderstorms is to blame for the cancellation, which according to Weather.com's Wakefield forecast were expected to begin in earnest by 9:45 a.m. The call came in to South Kingstown firefighters around 8:40 a.m.
According to the town's police and fire dispatchers the parade was cancelled for safety reasons. Town parks and recreation officials made the call just after 8:30 a.m.
A short ceremony at the Veterans Memorial at Saugatucket Park was to be held, but it has been moved to 11 a.m. at the South Kingstown High School auditorium according to South Kingstown police dispatchers. All parade participants are encouraged to attend.
6 a.m. -- While Narragansett doesn’t have a parade, members of its Color Guard, band and other clubs will be participating in the South Kingstown parade.
According to some website called South Kingstown Patch, the parade starts at 10 a.m. It goes from Holly Street, continues down Main Street, and concludes at Saugatucket Park on High Street. A short ceremony will be held at the Veterans Memorial at Saugatucket Park immediately following.
In the event of inclement weather, please contact the Neighborhood Guild at 789-9301. Narragansett Color Guard coach Joyce Huntley said he squad is performing, along with several new members from the Pier School.
Looking to go to the beach? All state beaches should be open. You can still buy beach passes there, even if RIDEM headquarters are sold out.
Finally, all levity aside, Memorial Day is a day that we celebrate our fallen soldiers. The Washington Post keeps extensive records via its Faces of the Fallen project of the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and included are two soldiers with listed hometowns of Narragansett.
- Sgt. Gregory A. Belanger was 24 when he died on August 27, 2003, in Operation Iraqi Freedom. He was killed when a makeshift bomb struck his vehicle, according to Faces of the Fallen. According to a Legacy.com page, Belanger was a Narragansett native with “big blue eyes and a mischievous nature.” Also from the Legacy page, he enlisted in the Army Reserves and was called up to active duty shortly after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, said his father, Ed Belanger. Belanger graduated from Johnson and Wales University in Providence, R.I., in 2001 with an associate degree in culinary arts before entering the Army as a cook. He was pursuing a bachelor's degree in food service management.
- Lt. J. G. Francis L. Toner IV was 26 when he died on March 27, 2009, in Operation Enduring Freedom. Part of a Navy unit of security transition control in Afghanistan, he died at Camp Shaheen, Mazar-e-Sharif, when an Afghan National Army soldier opened fire. According to an Associated Press article in The Ventura County Star, Toner was a native of Ventura County living in Rhode Island, and in one of the last e-mails before his death he expressed optimism for the peace process.
Do you know of a Narragansett native who died while serving his or her country? Feel free to let us know in the comments, or send me an e-mail, and I will add the text to this article.
Did you go to the South Kingstown parade? We’d love to have your photos, video or report from it! Send me an e-mail and we can chat about it.