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Anyone is welcome to participate in the parade. We have marching bands, floats, vehicles, small groups, big groups and more. The only requirement to be in the parade is that you do so to honor veterans. Applications must be recieved by November 1.
Portland’s only Veterans Day parade started in 1974. Vernon E. Ross, proprietor of Ross Hollywood Funeral Chapel, founded this parade to honor all veterans, past and present, living and deceased.
Vernon, a veteran himself, served as a medic at the Veterans Hospital in Vancouver, Washington during World War I. In World War II, he served as a captain in the Veterans Guard & Patrol. Vernon was very active in many veteran organizations such as the American Legion Post No. 1, Forty & Eight Voiture No. 25, Portland Barracks No. 53 of the Veterans of World War I and the Last Man’s Club.
Vernon E. Ross purchased a small triangular piece of land for $19,000 in front of his Ross Hollywood Funeral Chapel and erected a flag pole with a planter. He said, "I wanted to do something to honor veterans of all wars, because "patriotism" has dropped to the lowest level ever." Vernon was an avid supporter and member of the Hollywood District and the Hollywood Boosters. Ross Hollywood later donated that property along with the flag pole to the city of Portland. Ross Hollywood Chapel still tends to the flag pole and provides routine maintenance to the light and replaces the flag flown proudly there once a year.