Hometown Heroes--Chat Howard and Dave Roberts

Dave Roberts
Dave Roberts
Chat Howard
Chat Howard

Each year, the Saint Patrick's Day parade brings untold thousands of people from all over the world to Savannah. And this year's celebration was a big success, thanks to two men working behind the scenes, adjutant Chat Howard and parade committee general chairman Dave Roberts.

The 2005 parade was literally the coolest in history. "[Parade grand marshal] Dan Sheehan will be known as the coolest marshal ever, because it was colder than any other Saint Patrick's parade," said Roberts. "And I'll be the coolest chairman."

Behind the scenes, the coolest chairman, and adjutant Howard, did it all. They made the parade happen, rain or shine.

"Me and my officers, we have to go to breakfasts in the morning and I went around collecting umbrellas and throwing them in the trash," said Roberts.

And Roberts says the weather wasn't necessarily a bad thing. "I like the cold weather, kept the parade moving."

Moving along with a few changes after last year's accident, when a parade car lost control and slammed into a band and some parade goers. Some changes you may not have noticed.

"We did ask for insurance, proof of insurance, and we did go out and we wanted to make sure this was a family-oriented parade and we made sure it was a clean parade," said Howard.

Some changes were impossible to ignore. For the first time in a few years, the Shriners were back and took the parade route by storm.

"We were glad to see them," said Howard. "We expected them to behave and they did and we look forward to seeing them in the future."

Because of their great organizational skills, family spirit, keeping traditions alive and making Savannah proud, Dave Roberts and Chat Howard are this week's WTOC Hometown Heroes.

If you'd like to nominate a Hometown Hero, you can drop us a line at the station: PO Box 8086, Savannah, GA 31412, or email  rwallace@wtoc.com.

Reported by: Kim Angelastro, kangelastro@wtoc.com