Alton continues longest-running Memorial Day Parade | St. Louis Public Radio

Alton continues longest-running Memorial Day Parade

May 28, 2012

The small town of Alton, Ill. boasts of having the longest consecutive Memorial Day Parade in the country. The community has honored the sacrifices of its sons and daughters in uniform for 145 years. 

Korean War veteran Harry Kortcamp says he was a boy the first time he marched in Alton’s Memorial Day Parade.

“When they had victory in Germany, I marched in that parade," he said. "When they had victory in Japan, I marched in that parade as a member of the Alton Legion Drum and Bugle Corps.”

Taking part again this year, Kortcamp carries on a tradition begun by Civil War veterans in 1868.

He says Alton’s youth today -- who may go on to fight in future wars -- can always count on the respect and admiration of their hometown.