Grand Lake shows its Memorial Day colors
May 26, 2008
World War II Veteran Larry Malouff senior made a vow in 1946 to participate in every Memorial Day celebration he could.
The promise was to honor his “comrades that were lost in WW II,” he said.
Malouff delivered a speech after Monday’s Memorial Day Parade at Grand Lake about the strength of the “Old Glory.”
“I’m dedicated to our flag,” Malouff said. “I adore it, I love it and I respect it.”
Malouff, 83, of Grand Lake, served as a a Medic in the 3rd Army in Europe. He was discharged on April 30, 1946.
He said the parade in the small town had good attendance and an atmosphere of celebration. “It’s just as good as you can ask for,” Malouff added.
Marvin Fischer, chairman of the Grand Lake Planning Commission, was also present at the parade.
“I’m here to honor our vets,” he said.
Fischer, 73, moved to Grand Lake in 1958. This is his 50th year participating in the parade.
“It’s fun,” he said. “I love the flag ceremony afterwards ” that’s the best part.”
His granddaughter, a paratrooper, is in combat.
Autumn Mallett, 17, also came to the parade with her younger twin sisters, Ariel and Hayley, both 16.
“We were told it’s a huge event of the town,” Autumn said.
The sisters are the daughters of Meredith and James Mallett of Durango. After the event the girls had plans to hang out in town and check out the sidewalk sales.
Holly McGraw came to Grand Lake for the weekend with her children Mark, 8, and Bridget, 4.
“It’s fun,” she said. “The kids enjoy all the candy.”
Veteran Tom Torres also enjoyed the parade. The U.S. Army Ranger served 15 years active duty and two years in the reserve.
“It’s great to hear the claps and the thank-yous,” he said. “This is what we fight for ” days like this.”
He also appreciated the support from locals who came to the event to honor the veterans and fallen soldiers.