Miller named Grand Marshal of the Halloween Parade



ALTON – St. Louis Regional Airport Manager David C. Miller will lead the Alton Halloween Parade this year as Grand Marshal.

“I thought it was quite an honor to be able to do this,” said Miller, who received the request from John Keller, board member of the RiverBend Growth Association, also a member of the East End Improvement Association. and its Alton Halloween Parade committee.

The EEIA has held the annual Alton Halloween Parade since 1916. This year’s parade begins at 7 p.m. on Saturday, October 30, along the Broadway Hallway beginning at the intersection of Washington and Broadway.

“I’ve been on a lot of parades with marching bands, but this is the first time I’m up front,” Miller said. “I’ve seen a lot of great marshals walk past me, but this is the first time I’ve been one.”

The next day, October 31, Miller will march with the Edwardsville Municipal Marching Band as part of the Edwardsville Halloween Parade.

Miller, of East Alton, accepted the unanimous parade committee nomination Thursday at the monthly RBGA board meeting.

“David Miller accepted with joy and humility our invitation to be the Marshal of the Alton Halloween 2021 Parade,” Keller told members of the EEIA on Thursday. “He thanks you all for this honor.

Miller, RBGA President in 2009, also attends the RGBA Past Presidents Board Meeting, which serves as the board of directors for the RBGA Board of Directors.

From high school in Salina, Kansas, Miller, 78, marched in parades.

“It’s my first time riding,” he says.

Miller plays a variety of clarinets and alto and tenor saxophones. He is also a member of the Granite City Municipal Band and the Dixie Dudes and Dance. He was a former clarinetist with the Alton Symphony Orchestra and is a past president and treasurer of the group.

Miller also sits on the Board of Directors of the Leadership Council of Southwestern Illinois and its Military Affairs and Southwest Illinois Transportation Enhancements committees, as well as the Board of Directors of the Southwest Illinois Trade and Investment Council.

Miller has participated in the Alton Halloween Parade every year as a volunteer Amateur Radio Operator and a member of the Lewis and Clark Radio Club for Amateur Radio Operators. Club members help coordinate the Halloween parade procession, and hams are integrated along the parade route as a constant communication system from the volunteers, helping to keep the parade running smoothly.

Miller was the former volunteer emergency coordinator for Madison County Ham Radio Emergency Services and also maintained the county’s status as an official emergency station under the auspices of Madison County Emergency Management .

He is also a member of the board of directors and past president of the Illinois Public Airport Association and sits on the board of directors of the tourism office of Great Rivers and Routes of Southwest Illinois.

Miller was honored by the Metro Area Professional Organization as a business leader a few years ago.

He will participate in the parade accompanied by his wife, Cora, with whom he does important volunteer work for the legendary Mustang Sanctuary at the Alhambra which saves wild mustang horses. He adopted a wild mustang he named Gabriel, named after the Archangel, and his goal is to enable “Gabe” to provide equine therapy to veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder for a program that LMS currently working to provide.

Miller is an Air Force veteran whose military duties included flight and non-flight duties. He retired as a major.

Music has always been a part of Miller’s life. Her grandfather, CF “Frank” Lebow, was a music teacher in Salina who performed under the direction of John Philip Sousa. In a full moment, Miller conducted some of his grandfather’s music in the Granite City Muny Band, as well as the Salina Muny Band, which Lebow led for 12 years.

“I brought my clarinet to Salina, where I still play in the muny and civic orchestras, and I can rehearse,” Miller recalls, “and the director brought one of the numbers from CF Lebow. You could have amazed me with a paper straw when the director asked me, “Would you like to lead your grandfather’s march?”

“I received the stick,” he recalls. “I was even more surprised the night of the concert with he did the same.

“He said, ‘CF Lebow’s grandson is playing with us tonight,’ hands me the stick again and says, ‘Mr. Miller, lead.’ “



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