David Carrasco to lead Phoenix Veterans Day Parade as Veterans Community Grand Marshal

Each year, the Phoenix Veterans Day Parade chooses amongst the 511,000 veterans in Maricopa County to have the honor of serving as Veteran Grand Marshals in the Phoenix Veterans Day Parade. In addition to the seven chosen Veteran Grand Marshals, we have two Community Grand Marshals, chosen for their service to the armed forces and to the greater Phoenix community. 

David Carrasco Community Grand Marshal
Young men sometimes find themselves at a crossroads, looking at a future that may not have a happy ending. David Carrasco was one of these young men. Enlisting in the U.S. Air Force offered security and a chance for a better future, and Carrasco seized that opportunity and made a better future for himself and countless others.

Carrasco’s assignment as a Security Policeman was the safeguarding of B-47s, B-52s and nuclear weapons. He later spent a year in investigations when he was assigned to Law Enforcement.

In 1966, he was assigned to a K-9 unit and was deployed to Vietnam. Even the best men disobey on occasion. While serving in Vietnam, Carrasco ignored the order to stay clear
of an unsafe area and instead put himself in harm’s way to ensure that each Sentry Dog Team was safe. No Sentry Dog team was injured, and every team member was accounted for. Carrasco’s disobedience earned him a Bronze Star.

Loss was a recurring struggle in Vietnam and Carrasco was no exception, losing his best friend and holding the hand of an unknown Army Military Policeman as he drew his last breath. Carrasco struggled with these losses and, in 2005, joined the American Legion Color Guard unit where he assisted in rendering full military honors. This experience so moved him that Carrasco founded a Color Guard group of veterans to attend veteran functions. By 2008, Carrasco’s group was recognized as the official veteran’s service organization, the POW/MIA/KIA Honor Guard. Carrasco recalls, “I wanted to support the families who lost a loved one and the difficulty they sometimes face in never having closure with the loss of that loved one.”

For 17 years and counting, Carrasco’s Honor Guard has rendered full military honors at funerals and has participated in countless events and activities, including an
award-winning Honor Guard entry in the Phoenix Veteran’s Day Parade. “For me to
stand in a formation and to render military honors for those who have gone
before me is an honor, and I feel it is my duty and responsibility to do so.” Carrasco’s
service to numerous military, veteran, and non-profit organizations have earned
him the distinct honor to be named this year’s Veterans Community Grand Marshal
for the 2022 Phoenix Veteran’s Day Parade, November 11th at 11 a.m. 

Read the stories of all seven Veteran Grand Marshals and the two Community Grand Marshals here in our continuing blog series and join us to thank them for their service at the Phoenix Veteran’s Day Parade on November 11th at 11 a.m. For more details about the marshals and the parade visit https://honoringamericasveterans.org/2022-phoenix-veterans-day-parade/