Paw Paw first responder rides Rose Bowl float

Paul Garrod -

     PAW PAW - The 2020 Rose Parade, held Jan. 1 in Pasadena, CA, featured 40 floats, 17 equestrian units with over 450 horses, and 20 marching bands.
    Among those entries was a float decorated with the help of three Paw Paw residents, using  this year’s theme, “Power of Hope.”
    The Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the International Association  of  Rebekah Assemblies have displayed a float every year in the Tournament of Roses parade. This year was no exception, as their theme was “First Responders Bring Hope”.
    It was on Paw Paw resident  Lisa Mearing’s “bucket list” to help decorate the float some year. Mearing is a member of the Radiant Rebekah Lodge 307, in Fennville, MI, a lodge that traces  its history back over a century.
    According to her husband, Lloyd,  she decided to send a letter of his accomplishments, to see if they would consider Lloyd as a float rider.
    Lloyd has over 38 years with the Paw Paw Volunteer Fire Department, 11 years with the Paw Paw Quick Response Team, and has been an emergency medical technician (EMT) for Van Buren Emergency Medical Services since 2000. He traveled to New York City following the 9/11 terrorist attacks with three other Paw Paw firemen, Steve Richardson, Ron Douglas Jr., and Ron Douglas Sr.
    The Odd Fellows and Rebekahs agreed to honor Lloyd as a First Responder.
    The Mearings, and Rebekah Lodge 307 member, Sue Herron, also of Paw Paw, flew out to California Dec. 26, where they spent five days helping decorate the float. According to Lloyd, “Every surface must be covered with flowers or natural materials. My spot on the float was standing next to the floral and seed covered fire truck.
     “While the float did not win any judge’s awards,” said Lloyd, “it was an honor to represent my fellow first responders for the five-and-a-half-mile-long parade.”

The Courier-Leader & Paw Paw Flashes

The Courier-Leader & Paw Paw Flashes
32280 E. Red Arrow Hwy. • P.O. Box 129
Paw Paw, MI 49079
(269) 657-5080

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