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William `Bill` Gosch (Submitted photo)
William "Bill" Gosch (Submitted photo)

North Tonawanda Watch: 99-year-old WWII veteran William Gosch 2023 Dyngus Day Parade grand marshal


Mon, Mar 20th 2023 09:35 am

The North Tonawanda Neighborhood Watch announced its grand marshal for the third annual NT Dyngus Day Parade. 99-year-old WWII veteran William “Bill” Gosch will lead this year’s parade, which will be held at 5 p.m. Monday, April 10.

"We are honored to have Mr. Gosch serve as our grand marshal for this year's parade," NT Neighborhood Watch Chairman Joe Marranca said. "It was a unanimous decision among our committee, and we could not think of anyone better to lead our parade.”

Gosch said, “I am honored to be the grand marshal for the parade this year. It’s going to be a great event, and I’m looking forward to seeing so many smiling faces as we proceed down Oliver Street – a place I remember fondly from growing up.”

He added, “It’s things like this that keep a community together and continue to remind ourselves how lucky we are to live in a town like North Tonawanda.”

Gosch, who has lived in NT his entire life, graduated from North Tonawanda High School as a member of the Class of 1942, and Niagara University, where he graduated in 1950. In the wake of the attack on Pearl Harbor, Gosch enlisted in the Marine Corps in December 1942, just a few months after finishing high school. He served overseas for two years in the Pacific Theater and participated in four combat missions.

Following the war, Gosch worked for Johns Manville then served as general manager of the Richardson Boat Co. He then spent many years as the manager of the NT Housing Authority. Upon retiring, Gosch enjoyed winters in Hawaii working alongside his beloved wife of 70 years, Lois, in the costume jewelry business. At the impressive age of 97, Gosch was appointed by the NT Common Council to serve as the interim 2nd Ward Alderman after the position was vacated by now-Clerk/Treasurer Donna Braun.

Marranca continued, “Mr. Gosch is an embodiment of the ‘Greatest Generation,’ and we as a community will always cherish him. We all appreciate his service to our city and country, and look forward to celebrating this year’s event with one of NT’s own hometown heroes.”

“We are grateful to have him,” Marranca added.

A press release stated, “The NT Dyngus Day Celebration has become a beloved tradition in the city. This year's festivities will feature the parade, which runs down Oliver Street, starting at the block of Buffalo Bolt Way and ending at the City Farmers Market, where there will be an after-party. The after-party will feature live music by polka band Captain Tom and the Hooligans, a beer tent hosted by the Sweeney Hose Fire Co., Polish food, desserts, games and more.”

Those interested in the marching in this year’s parade can sign up here. For more information about this year’s event, or to order the official 2023 commemorative NT Dyngus Day T-shirt, visit www.NTdyngusday.com.

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