Posted: Friday, July 4th 2014 at 11:47pm
Demorest celebrates freedom with special guest veteran
By Rob Moore Editor
World War II veteran Paul S. Allen prepares to throw candy as he rides along the parade route with Police Chief Greg Ellingson. (Photo/Rob Moore)
DEMOREST - While the theme of the 125th Glorious Fourth of July in Demorest centered around baseball, the event took on special meaning as the city honored a special guest.
World War II veteran Paul S. Allen of Demorest, who will turn 90 in August, joined Mayor Rick Austin and others on stage for the opening ceremony, then rode with Police Chief Greg Ellingson to lead the parade.
Allen threw candy to children who were among the estimated 3,500 people lining the parade route.
"Paul Allen served in the second World War, and he was a member of the Timberwolves Division," Austin said. "As I recall, the 104th Division."
Allen was a machine gunner who had some close calls.
"They were in Germany, they were in France, they did a lot of things," Austin said. "But more than anything, his service and the people that served with him ensured our freedoms that we have today."
Allen recently opened up to Austin about some of his wartime experiences.
"There were a couple of times that he came very close to not coming back home," Austin said. "He fully gives God the glory, and he says angels watched over him as he was there."
Austin said he plans for the city to further honor Allen with both a proclamation and a resolution recognizing his service.
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