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By JONATHAN DARLING, Standard-Times correspondent

Veterans Day is a time to reflect and honor the brave men and women who fought and continue to fight for the many freedoms we enjoy on a day-to-day basis.
A host of activities, breakfasts and parades fill the slate this week, giving everyone in the SouthCoast a chance to participate and show their gratitude and respect for veterans.
The Veterans Day Parade in Wareham will be themed "Support the Troops" for those serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as celebrating and remembering veterans from wars of the past.
The parade starts at 1 p.m. from Besse Park and will head down Main Street to Route 6 to the Memorial Town Hall, where a ceremony will be held at the World War II, Korean and Vietnam War Memorial next to Town Hall.
New Bedford also is holding its annual Veterans Day Parade, and this year centers on World War II Veterans.
2005 marks the 60th anniversary of the end of the historic war.
Several World War II veterans will lead the parade, which starts at Buttonwood Park, then progresses down Union Street to Pleasant Street, where a ceremony will be held in front of the library.
"All World War II veterans are invited to join us," said Jon Moniz, one of the organizers of the parade. "It's something different for this year. It should be exciting."
The Fort Taber Military Museum has a special exhibition of World War II artifacts and memorabilia on display from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday.
Saturday is the date for the annual Veterans Day Dance at the Dudley L. Brown Post 2846 VFW & Auxiliary on Onset. A $10 donation is asked for an evening full of fun and dancing. Refreshments are available, as well as a presentation of 'The Lost Soldier.'
State Rep. John Quinn will be the guest speaker at the Veterans Breakfast at the Dartmouth Council on Aging on Thursday from 8 to 10 a.m. Open to all veterans from Dartmouth, the breakfast is a time to see old friends and ask Rep. Quinn questions about Veterans; affairs.
"Last year, a lot of people saw others they haven't seen in years," said Shawn Goldstein of Dartmouth Veterans' Services. "You never know who you'll see there."
St. Mary's School in New Bedford will be having a Veterans Day prayer service on Thursday at 9 a.m., which includes a parade of flags. A parent of a St. Mary's student, state Junior Vice Cmdr. Roland Gendron, has just returned from Iraq and will be speaking to the children about his time in the war and about the flag.
The town of Middleboro also has many activities on its plate for the Veterans Day weekend. A breakfast at 8:30 a.m. Thursday at the Middleboro Council on Aging starts the weekend. Last year, more than 140 attended the breakfast. Call the COA (508-946-2490) by the end of the day tomorrow to reserve a spot.
The Middleboro Veterans Day Parade starts at Town Hall at 10 a.m. and will head down Union Street. The parade concludes at Veterans' Memorial Park, where a special dedication of the Vietnam Monument will take place.
Veterans in Westport are headed to Westport Elementary School on Wednesday to meet and interact with students.
"Someone will put on a program for the first-graders, explaining the patriotism of the American flag," said Ron Costa of Westport Veterans Services. "We meet the kid and answer questions."
Thursday is a breakfast at the Westport Council on Aging then Friday is a special ceremony at Beech Grove Cemetery at 8:30 a.m.
This afternoon marks a special ceremony at the Massachusetts National Cemetery at 1 p.m. Col. Sandra Warde, executive support staff officer at the Massachusetts Air National Guard, will be the guest speaker.
The cemetery is located on the Massachusetts Military Reservation off Route 28 in Bourne.
For more information about any of these activities, call the town's Veterans Services department.

This story appeared on Page A3 of The Standard-Times on November 6, 2005.
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