A list of the Grand Marshals since 1925

2020 Parade Grand Marshalls


2020 Grand Marshals World War II Veterans joined by past Grand Marshals “Big Jim” Griffith, Jim Ronstadt, Dan Marries, Chandler Warden, 2020 Arizona Rodeo Queen Shelby Williams, and Parade Chairman Ed Stolfa

Rodeo Parade Honors WWII Vets

They have been called “The Greatest Generation.” They left family, friends, and loved ones, put their lives on hold and answered their country’s call when it needed them most to help save the world from tyranny. They fought on the continents of Europe, Asia, and Africa and in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. At various times, their service was carried out under severe winter conditions, in the harshest of deserts, and in the hottest, most humid tropical climates. They are the Veterans of World War Two.

Their numbers are dwindling. Of over 16 million members of the U.S. Armed Forces during WWII, less than 390,000 are estimated to be alive. To honor these American heroes, The Tucson Rodeo Parade Committee names World War II Veterans Grand Marshals of the 2020 Tucson Rodeo Parade.

We are honored to have several WWII veterans participating in the parade this year. These are men and women with local ties to the Tucson community.

Don Sloane – A New York City native, 18-year-old Don enlisted in the Army and was deployed in Europe from 1945-1948 as part of the Occupation forces. After the war, Don moved to Tucson, and went into the furniture business. He changed to selling Army Surplus goods, and has been proprietor of Miller Surplus since 1956.

Red Hollander – Red was born in Pittsburgh, PA and was drafted into the Navy at age 18. He served during WWII and after being discharged, moved to Tucson. He re-enlisted in 1947 and served during the Korean Conflict. After his final discharge in 1954, he was a U.S. Postal worker until his retirement. His son Rick is a member of the Tucson Rodeo Committee.

Walter Ram – Walter is a Nogales native who was a radio operator and gunner on a B-17 bomber. His squadron completed five bombing missions without incident, but on his sixth, his plane was shot down. He was captured and spent nearly two years as a prisoner of war before being liberated in May, 1945. After the war Walter ran a successful trucking company and a distributorship out of his hometown of Nogales until his retirement.

Mike Lude – Mike served in the Marine Corps in the Pacific theater and after the war established himself as a college football coach at Hillsdale, Maine, Delaware and Colorado State; and Athletic Director at Kent State and Washington. He retired to Tucson in 1995.

Gwen Niemi – Gwen served in the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corp during the war. After her service, she spent over 25 years teaching at the University of Arizona and Tucson Unified School District.

Gilbert (Rod) Rodriguez – Rod, a Tucson native, served in the Army Air Corp and U.S. Air Force in both WWII and the Korean War. He was an aircraft engineer mechanic at Davis Monthan Air Force Base for over 30 years.

The Committee thanks Kathy and Thom Mansur for their help in arranging for these veterans’ participation. Kathy and Thom facilitate the Southern Arizona Honor Flight that takes veterans of WWII, Korea and Vietnam to visit the war memorials in Washington, D.C.

In honor of all World War Two veterans, living and deceased, The Tucson Rodeo Parade Committee, Inc. is proud to name them Grand Marshals of the 2020 Tucson Rodeo Parade.

2024 - Louise Thomas

2022 - Aida Barnes

2020 - World War II Veterans

2019 - Guy Atchley

2018 - Tucson Conquistadors

2017 - Jeannette Maré

2016- Chandler Warden

2015 - Coach Jerry Kindall

2014 - Dan Marries
2013 - Gabrielle Giffords and Mark Kelly

2012 - Tucson Boys Chorus
2011 - Joel D. Valdez
2010 - Big Jim Griffith
2009 - Mayor Robert E. Walkup
2008 - Humberto Lopez
2007 - Richard H. Carmona. M.D., M.P.H., F.A.C.S
2006 - Louise Serpa
2005 -Baxter Black
2004 - Mrs. Cele Peterson
2003 - Larry Mahan
2002 - Mike Candrea
2001 - olan Ellis
2000 - Hadley Barrett
1999 - Sons of the Pioneers
1998 - Rex Allen, Jr.
1997 - Don Collier
1996 - Ben Johnson
1995 - Charles Sampson
1994 - Gil Fricker
1993 - Jim Ronstadt
1992 - Burt Humphrey
1991 - Bill West
1990 - Chuck Henson
1989 - Jim Click, Jr.
1988 - Lute Olson
1987 - Governor Rose Mofford
1986 - Bill Breck
1985 - Paul Grimes
1984 - Mayor Lew Murphy
1983 - Frank B. Roe
1982 - Roscoe Christopher
1981 - Kingston J. Smallhouse
1980 - Joe Weinzapfel
1979 - Clinton L. Helbig
1978 - Roy P. Drachman
1977 - Joseph O. Niemann
1976 - Alex G. Jacome
1975 - Harry V. Chambers

[one-half-first]1974 Gene C. Reid
1973 Royal Irving
1972 Brooks Davis
1971 John R. Snider
1970 Ambassador Raul H. Castro
1969 U. S. Senator Carl Hayden
1968 C. Edgar Goyette
1967 Ferd Lauber
1966 George W. Chambers
1965 Fred Blanc
1964 Pete Waggoner
1963 Clarence E. Britten
1962 A. M. (Jake) Meyer
1961 Harry Blacklidge
1960 Dr. Richard Harvill
1959 Frank Putter
1958 Frank Putter
1957 Frank Putter
1956 Ed Echols
1955 Ed Echols
1954 Ed Echols
1953 Ed Echols
1952 Ed Echols
1951 Ed Echols
1950 Frank Putter

1949 Frank Putter
1948 Frank Putter
1947 Frank Putter
1946 Frank Putter
1945 no Parade – WW II
1944 no Parade – WW II
1943 Frank Putter
1942 Frank Putter
1941 J. C. Jack Kinney
1940 J. C. Jack Kinney
1939 J. C. Jack Kinney
1938 J. C. Jack Kinney
1937 J. C. Jack Kinney
1936 J. C. Jack Kinney
1935 Fred Ginter
1934 J. C. Jack Kinney
1933 J. C. Jack Kinney
1932 J. C. Jack Kinney
1931 J. C. Jack Kinney
1930 J. C. Jack Kinney
1929 American Legion & Pete Waggoner
1928 American Legion & Pete Waggoner
1927 American Legion & Pete Waggoner
1926 American Legion & Pete Waggoner

Lions Club, Kiwanis, Rotary Club & Pete Waggoner



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