This year’s Memorial Day parades have become the latest victim of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The towns of Berlin, Durham and Middlefield have all announced parade cancellations. However, town officials remain committed to providing recognition for those who died in military services.
Bob Francis, Memorial Day Parade chairman and commander of American Legion Post 184, said “it is possible that a small, limited participation ceremony will take place” in Durham depending on the state’s progress managing the virus.
Francis said any update will be announced by May 15.
Middlefield, which typically joins in Durham’s parade, is planning its traditional Memorial Day ceremony on the town green, according to First Selectman Edward Bailey.
“We usually have a pretty small group show up,” he said. “And the event is outside so people will be able to practice safe social distancing.”
The Veterans Commission of Berlin also voted to cancel the town’s Memorial Day parade for the safety of residents. But Chairman Charles Colaresi remains hopeful the town will be able to hold a ceremony on Memorial Day.
Berlin Town Manager Arosha Jayawickrema said the commission is still contemplating the decision, saying that the coronavirus has left things “in flux.”