SHSU Event is Part
A Red, White, and Blue Huntsville celebration is scheduled for Specialist Steven Gonzales, one of three United States soldiers taken captive and later released by Serbian forces.
Of Gonzales Welcome Home Celebration
Gonzales, whose parents, Gilbert and Rosie Gonzales, are residents of Huntsville, will be the focus of a large military/non-commercial parade on Saturday, May 22.
The celebration, entitled Welcome Home Steven, is a chance for veterans and citizens of Texas to welcome home one of their own.
The parade starts at 11 a.m. and will follow a two-mile flag-decorated route through the downtown business district, ending at Sam Houston State University. A special ceremony with local, state and national figures will recognize Specialist Gonzales at the Bernard Johnson Coliseum on the campus at 12:30 p.m.
The parade, featuring numerous military groups, veterans, POWs, honor guards, floats and bands, will be led by Gonzales to a reviewing stand. Prior to arrival at the reviewing stand, Specialist Gonzales' vehicle will stop at the Walker County Courthouse where a yellow ribbon will be removed from a tree. The yellow ribbon was placed on the tree by Gilbert and Rosie Gonzales at the beginning of their son's captivity.
Immediately following the parade and ceremony at SHSU, an afternoon birthday celebration will be hosted by the West Hill Mall. The birthday party will feature music, food and military displays. The gathering will allow Steven Gonzales to belatedly celebrate his birthday, which occurred during his captivity.
The day-long event is a joint effort on the part of the City of Huntsville, the Huntsville/Walker County Chamber of Commerce, West Hill Mall, Sam Houston State University, Southwestern Bell Pioneers, various civic clubs, Walker County Sheriff's Office and the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.
Additional information may be obtained by contacting Dee McFarland, executive director of the Huntsville/Walker County Chamber of Commerce, at 409-295-8113.
- END -
SHSU Media Contact: Frank Krystyniak
May 19, 1999
Please send comments, corrections, news tips to Today@Sam.edu