SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Cities and towns across western Massachusetts will salute those who served with Veterans Day ceremonies, parades and events this Thursday.

Springfield will host a Veterans Day parade ending with a ceremony and wreath laying here at the Veterans Monument. The parade will begin at 11 a.m. Thursday at Springfield Technical Community College, and it will make its way down State Street to City Hall.

Veterans Day Parade

It will be led by Springfield’s 2021 Veteran of the Year Donald Roberts, who served in Vietnam before becoming a Springfield Public Schools teacher. Roberts retired as a Springfield Public School administrator after 42 years. He has received the Vietnam Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal and the Army Commendation Medal.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the parade itself will be downsized compared to past years, but Mayor Domenic Sarno says the public is invited to watch along the route and is asking for a big turnout. Those in the parade are asked to limit their group to 12 people, wear masks and maintain social distance.

Veterans Day Ceremony at Massachusetts Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery

After the parade there will be a memorial and wreath laying ceremony at the Massachusetts Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery located at 1390 Main Street in Agawam. Mayor Sarno is scheduled to speak during the ceremony.