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Adjutant general to be Sharpsburg's grand marshal

October 09, 2000

Adjutant general to be Sharpsburg's grand marshal



By DON WORTHINGTON / Staff Writer


SHARPSBURG - Maryland's Adjutant General will be the grand marshal for the 134th annual Memorial Day Parade, organizers announced Monday.

Gen. James F. Fretterd, head of the state's Military Department, has accepted the parade's invitation, Jan Wetterer told the Town Council.

The Adjutant General is responsible for the budget of the Military Department and is the custodian of all state and federal property

used by the organized militia. He is also responsible for the administration, training, and supply of approximately 9,400 National Guard troops.

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The Adjutant General is appointed by the governor.

Acting Mayor Sidney Gale said the announcement is good news for the parade, an event that recently has experienced some difficult times.

To improve the parade the town took over the main sponsorship of the event, Gale said. Past committee members and new volunteers are scheduled to meet 7:30 p.m. Oct. 16 at the Town Hall to decide who is responsible for the many details involved in putting on the parade.

"This is the time we need to start pushing," Gale said.

The meeting will also help determine what kind of parade the town sponsors, Gale said. In the past, parade organizers focused on military units but found it increasingly difficult to get timely commitments from the armed services, longtime parade worker Jan Wetterer said.

With the assistance of former Washington County commissioner Ron Bowers, an invitation to be grand marshal was extended to Fretterd. The invitation also included a request that military bands, color guards, marching units, and vehicles be sent to the parade, Wetterer said.

Town council members Gale and Ralph Hammond were named to the parade committee.

Gale said the town annually budgets about $3,000 for the parade. He said the Town Council is willing to consider using its fund to offer parade prizes or pay the transportation for marching bands.

"We have been disappointed with the number of units each year. The parade has gone downhill. We want to improve the parade as a whole, add numbers and add quality," Gale said.

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