St. Patrick's Day Grand Marshal Chosen

Savannah's St. Patrick's Day Parade Committee elected physician Dr. Frank Rossiter as this year's grand marshal.
Savannah's St. Patrick's Day Parade Committee elected physician Dr. Frank Rossiter as this year's grand marshal.

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - It's a big honor for any Savannah resident. One some people wait their whole lives to receive. Savannah's St. Patrick's Day Parade Committee elected physician Dr. Frank Rossiter as this year's grand marshal. The Savannah native will lead the city's 184th St. Patrick's Day parade next month.

It's Rossiter in '08. On the best day in the most beautiful city in America, Dr. Francis Patrick Rossiter will lead the 2008 parade as grand marshal.

"I feel fine. It's a good day. It's a beautiful day," he said.

Dr. Rossiter was elected at the annual gathering of the St. Patrick's Day Parade Committee at Benedictine Military School, where he graduated in 1958.

"It's a big day, not only for me, but for my whole family," said Dr. Rossiter.

Dr. Rossiter's family includes his dad, Frank Senior, one of Savannah's most beloved figures and the grand marshal in 1972. Perhaps it was his spirit that guided the record turnout that brought Dr. Rossiter the victory.

"We've had the largest turnout we've probably ever had for the election of a grand marshal," explained general chairman John Forbes.

The committee voted and counted behind closed doors for over an hour before the winner's name was on every lip. Dr. Rossiter was visibly moved by the honor.

"We've been involved in this forever, from when I was a little kid in parochial school, walking in the parade, year after year," he said. "This is a culmination of all of it."

On March 14, a new song will announce St. Patrick's Day in Savannah. A song that honors the spirit of the city's Irish and the man marching at the head of the parade.

Dr. Rossiter will be publicly invested next Sunday. WTOC will have complete coverage on THE News and wtoc.com.

Reported by: Craig Harney, charney@wtoc.com