Observing Veterans Day 2021 in SWFL

Reporter: Taylor Wirtz Writer: Joey Pellegrino

The Veterans Day parade marches through Cape Coral Thursday morning, one of many events being held in Southwest Florida to mark the day of remembrance.

Thousands of people will come to line Cape Coral Parkway for the parade at 11 a.m., which will head westbound from Cape Coral Street to Chester Street. The celebration is a cooperative effort between the City of Cape Coral Parks and Recreation and local volunteers.

The Midpoint Madness Veterans Day 5k Walk/Run will go from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., starting and finishing at the base of the Midpoint Bridge.

If you head a little further north, the Military Heritage Museum in Punta Gorda will be holding an entire day of celebrations, including a quilts of valor recognition ceremony honoring local veterans, cockpit tours of the Huey helicopter and a patriotic concert in the evening. The museum says the purpose of this day is to tell the stories of those who have served.

“Veterans Day, for me, is a celebration,” said Gary Butler, with the Military Heritage Museum. “It’s a it’s a time to say ‘thank you.’ It’s a time to honor them. It’s a time of friendship and a time of, you know, thanksgiving. That’s the type of Veterans Day we need to have every patriotic, uplifting, inspiring day. It is truly about celebrating their service and what it’s done for our great country.”

Naples Church at 10910 Immokalee Road is hosting the Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall on its continual tour across the country. The wall is 3/5 of the scale of the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C., and the church says it will give all people the opportunity to heal and reunite, whether or not they can make the trip to the nation’s capital. The wall arrived Wednesday, and you can stop by 24 hours a day until 9 a.m. Tuesday.

Church staff say they know people are going to visit with all sorts of experiences and emotions related to veterans and past wars in tow, and they will be here for them.

“You know, it’s such an honor and privilege to be able to host this wall for the week,” said Cori Higgins, team development coordinator for Naples Church. “We just want it to be a place of peace and healing for people. We have [volunteers] out here 24/7 who are going to come alongside those that may need some extra counsel or help, so we’re anticipating lots of emotions.”

Admission to the wall is free and all sponsorship money will go to the Wounded Warrior Project. For more information, visit the Naples Church website.

Copyright ©2023 Fort Myers Broadcasting. All rights reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written consent.