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Pam Buschle named grand marshal of East Grand Rapids 4th of July parade

Pam Buschle Grand Marshal East Grand RapidsEast Grand Rapids, Mich. (June 27, 2016) – Long-time East Grand Rapids native and community supporter Pam Buschle has been named grand marshal for the city’s annual Fourth of July Celebration.

The event this year is being sponsored by the City of East Grand Rapids and Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital. Both are celebrating 125-year anniversaries.

Buschle will ride in the noon parade in an amphibious vehicle owned and driven by Mary Free Bed CEO Kent Riddle and his wife, Susan.

“I am so honored to be selected as the grand marshal for this year’s celebration,” said Buschle, who has lived in East Grand Rapids for 29 years with her husband, Marty. They have three children, all graduates of East Grand Rapids High School.

Buschle has served on the executive board for the Wealthy Elementary School Parent Teacher Association and has been a Girl Scout leader, coach for Girls on the Run of Kent County, a member of the Community Action Council and a volunteer at the Rhoades McKee Reeds Lake Triathlon.

She also is an advocate for Mary Free Bed, where she went for rehabilitation after winning a grueling battle with sepsis in 2013. The victory took its toll on her body, and doctors were forced to amputate her legs below the knee and both arms below the elbow. Four months of intensive inpatient therapy and hard work helped Buschle to walk out of Mary Free Bed on two prosthetic legs. She later received a pair of myoelectric hands.

“My friends, neighbors and family members in East Grand Rapids, as well as the team of professionals at Mary Free Bed, have supported me with such compassion and generosity during my recovery,” Buschle said. “I am truly privileged to be a member of our East Grand Rapids community.”

In the months since her graduation, Buschle returned to her job as a social worker in Kentwood Public Schools as well as many activities, including bicycling, swimming and driving.

“Pam has been a strong figure in our community for many years, so we are thrilled to have her lead our Fourth of July Celebration,” Mayor Amna Siebold said. “I continue to be inspired by her perseverance and passion for life.”

The Fourth of July Celebration will include free family-friendly activities from morning until night. All events, except the Reeds Lake Trail Blazer and parade, will be held in John Collins Park. A list of this year’s events includes:

8:30 am: Reeds Lake Trail Blazer 5K to support the EGR Community Foundation. More information is at https://www.reedslaketrailblazer.com/.

Noon – 1 pm: Parade. Note that this year there is a new route, which begins at the Sherman/Wealthy intersection, continues east on Wealthy, turns left on Lakeside and ends at Reeds Lake Boulevard

Noon: Shafer Concessions and What the Truck open

1 – 3:30 pm: Family fun including inflatables, airbrush tattoos, balloon animals, caricatures, a swing dancing presentation, a big party ball demonstration and face painting

1:30 – 2:45 pm: Grand City Show Skiers performance on Reeds Lake

2:45 – 3:15 pm: Magician, which is new this year

8 pm – Dusk: Hark Up performance  · Dusk: Fireworks over Reeds Lake

For more information about sponsorships, donations or participating in the parade, please visit http://www.eastgr.org/index.aspx?nid=182, call the Parks and Recreation department at 616.949.1750, contact Susan Perry at sperry@eastgr.org or follow the City on Facebook and Twitter.

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