Downtown parade, ceremonies mark Veterans Day


Events will be held around San Diego County today to commemorate Veterans Day.

One of the biggest events will be the 23rd annual Veterans Day parade in downtown San Diego, which attracts thousands of spectators and participants from all branches of the military.

“Welcome Home Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraq Freedom Veterans” is the theme of this year’s parade in honor of the more than 5,000 service members killed and the 1.8 million who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“We want to invite all of the San Diego community to join with us to honor our nation’s veterans at the 23rd annual Veterans Day parade,’’ said Joe Brunner, chairman of the Veterans Museum and Memorial Center Veterans Day Parade Committee.

Participants are being asked to wear yellow ribbons or clothing to show support for the nation’s veterans.

The parade begins at 11 a.m. at the corner of Pacific Highway and Cedar Street and will proceed south to West Harbor Drive, where the procession will conclude.

Memorials are also being held around San Diego County, including in Solana Beach at the Veterans Memorial at La Colonia Community Park. The ceremony takes place from 11 a.m. to noon at 715 Valley Ave.

Veterans for Peace of San Diego will hold a morning “Arlington West” Veterans Day memorial featuring crosses to symbolize military personnel who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan next to the USS Midway Museum.

There will also be Veterans Day celebrations in Rancho Bernardo at Webb Park, Carlsbad at the Army and Navy Academy and Escondido at Grape Day Park.

Veterans Day will be recognized at Legoland California with the installation of a permanent display of a miniature replica of the Vietnam War Memorial made entirely out of Lego bricks.

In the afternoon, a World War II-era Corsair fighter plane will be hoisted onto the deck of the USS Midway Museum during a Veterans Day ceremony.

There will also be entertainment, skydiving and an appearance by the world champion Chula Vista Parkview Little League team. $1 from every paid admission will be donated to the Veterans Village of San Diego.