Judge Keith named Parade Co-Grand Marshal

Melody Baetens
The Detroit News

Honorable Judge Damon J. Keith will serve as the Co-Grand Marshal for the 90th America’s Thanksgiving Parade in Detroit.

Known as a champion for civil rights, Judge Keith is a graduate of Detroit’s Northwestern High School. He was the first African American chief judge on the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. In 1977, President Jimmy Carter appointed Judge Keith to the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

“As a native Detroiter I have many happy memories of being camped out on Woodward Avenue early Thanksgiving morning (in record-cold temperatures during some years), peeking through the massive crowds to marvel in excitement at the beautiful floats from our America’s Thanksgiving Parade presented by Art Van,” said Judge Keith in a release. “For almost as many years as the parade has been in existence, I have had the privilege of witnessing this national pastime, first as a young child with my parents, and then seeing that same amazement on the faces of my own children years later.”

In the upcoming months, the Parade Company will release addition information on the parade’s second Co-Grand Marshal, plus new floats and celebrity appearances.

This year’s parade theme is “90 Years Together.” Keith, who turned 94 on July 4, will lead the parade down Woodward on Nov. 24. Produced by the non-profit, Detroit-based Parade Company, the procession will air on television in more than 160 major cities. See it locally on WDIV-TV Local 4 or hear it on 760 WJR.

mbaetens@detroitnews.com

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