Ceremonies Will Recognize Upgrades to Calzone and Draper Parks

By Michelle Sanford, Editor

Milford will honor its veterans this year with a parade scheduled for Thursday, November 11. During the parade, two special ceremonies will also be held at Calzone Park and Draper Park in order to recognize the restorations that have been completed at both parks.

Draper Park Flags

These flags will fly in Draper Memorial Park through November 17.
(Michelle Sanford photo)

Jo-Ann DeMaria Morgan, Chair of the Veterans’ Advisory Council, was named the parade’s Grand Marshall this year. “I am just so honored and humbled by it,” she said.

According to the Director of Veterans Services John Pilla, the parade will “step off ” at 10 a.m. from Veterans Memorial Drive (near the IHop Restaurant) and proceed up East Main St. where a ceremony will take place at Calzone Park beginning at approximately 10:30 a.m.

During this year’s ceremony, the renovated Doughboy Monument will be unveiled by descendants of Matthew Calzone. Calzone was the first Milford soldier who lost his life in World War I and for whom the Park was renamed. The Doughboy Monument commemorates veterans of World War I and was first unveiled 100 years ago, on November 11, 1921.

Once the Calzone Park ceremony is finished, the parade will continue on to Draper Park where the second ceremony is scheduled to take place at approximately 11 a.m. The ceremony will discuss and unveil the monument upgrades to that park.

The transformation of both parks comes after three years of fundraising, organizing, and construction through efforts by the War Memorial Revitalization Committee, Citizens for Milford, the Milford Parks Commission, the Milford Veterans Services among others who helped support the renovations.

War Memorial Revitalization Committee Chair Peter Scandone will be the Master of Ceremonies. The Milford High School Marching Band, and state and local officials, clergy and other organizations in the community will also be part of the Veteran’s Day events.

Residents driving or walking by Draper Park will notice that once again, the Park is filled with American Flags. Residents were able to sponsor a flag in honor of a veteran, alive or deceased, or an active member of the military. That flag has a card naming the person being honored, his or her military branch and years of service, and the sponsors names.