The Philadelphia Veterans Parade and Festival recently welcomed Gritty, the Phillie Phanatic, Swoop, Franklin and Phang for a team jersey presentation to five residents of the Delaware Valley Veterans Home, 2701 Southampton Road.
The Adjutant General of Pennsylvania’s Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, Maj. Gen. Mark J. Schindler, was in attendance.
The mascots brought souvenirs for everyone and special gifts to selected veterans.
• The Phanatic presented a Phillies warmup jacket to Navy veteran Marvin Siegler, whose favorite player is Bryce Harper
• Gritty presented a No. 16 Flyers jersey to Army veteran Robert Taylor, whose favorite player was Bobby Clarke
• Swoop presented an Eagles jersey to Army veteran George Rodgers
• Franklin presented a 76ers jersey to Marine Corps veteran James Hetherington, whose favorite basketball memory is watching Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (then known as Lew Alcindor) play in college at UCLA
• Phang presented a Union jersey to Air Force veteran Louis Isern
The room was decorated with pennants, banners, military flags and team color balloons.
Mission BBQ brought food, and the menu also included Tastykakes, popcorn, hot dogs and pretzels.
Veterans heard We Will Rock You, sang Dancing on My Own, Here Come the Sixers and The Eagles’ Victory Song (Fly, Eagles Fly) and chanted E-A-G-L-E-S.
On a highlight reel, they heard Gene Hart announce, “Ladies and gentlemen, the Flyers are going to win the Stanley Cup,” and Harry Kalas say, “The Philadelphia Phillies are 2008 world champions of baseball.”
Highlights also included the Miracle of the Meadowlands I and II and the Philly Special. ••