BUCYRUS -- Vietnam War veteran Trent Cornell has been chosen as the 2019 Grand Marshal for the 2019 Bratwurst Festival Parade.
With the chosen theme for 2019 being “Brattie Salutes our Veterans,” festival Board President Amanda Myers said, “We wanted to choose and honor people that not only made a significant impact on our community and our festival, but also those who made a significant impact on our freedom by serving our country.”
After graduating in 1967 from Bucyrus High School, where he served as drum major for the high school marching band, Cornell enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps and was assigned to Bravo Company, 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division where he served as a combat soldier.
Cornell participated in the 68th Tet Offensive in the Battle of Hue City, where Cornell’s division recaptured the Citadel and was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation. Cornell was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps in August 1969.
Ironically, Cornell deployed in August of 1967, just days before the first Bratwurst Festival.
“It is such an honor to be named Grand Marshal and to be recognized in front of my hometown,” said Cornell.
In his civilian life, Cornell completed cost analysis studies on B-1 bombers while working for Rockwell, which was later bought out by Boeing. He also worked in the treasurer’s office for the Bucyrus City School District.
Cornell married his wife, Oriana, in 1970. Known by many as the percussion advisor for BHS Marching Band for 20 years, and now entering his seventh season as percussion advisor for the Wynford High School Band, Trent has a place in the heart of many Bucyrus residents.
Cornell will speak at the Boyd Long Opening Ceremony on the Wyandot Mutual Stage on Aug. 15 at 11 a.m. He will also speak at the “Remembering Our Heroes” event at the VFW Post 1078 on Aug. 17 at 11 a.m. The public is invited to both events.
This year, as in recent years, the festival will honor several individuals posthumously as Honorary Parade Marshals. Being honored this year are hometown hero, Purple Heart recipient and Medal of Honor recipient, 1st Lt. Harry L. Martin. Martin will be represented at the opening ceremony and in the parades by several family members.
Ronald Barnes, a long time Bratwurst Festival electrician, was a member of the U.S. Army. Barnes is remembered by fellow Bratwurst Festival committee members as having a kind heart and always being there to do whatever it takes to make things happen. Barnes died on Oct. 24, 2018.
Lastly, the festival committee has chosen to use the role of Honorary Parade Marshall and name “All POW/MIA.”
Bratwurst Festival Director Larry West, who served in the U.S. Army, said, “When honoring the men and women of the armed forces, and our veterans, we would be remiss if we did not take a moment to remember all of those who were either captured and held, were killed in action, or are missing in action.”
Look for a “rider-less horse” leading the Bratwurst Festival parade on Aug. 15 at 7 p.m. The rider-less horse signifies those lost in action.
For more information, visit the festival website at www.bucyrusbratwurstfestival.com