Buffeted by sharp northeast winds whipping off Nantucket Sound, marchers in the annual Island Veterans Day parade yesterday were met by a burst of bright sunshine as they headed up Lake avenue in Oak Bluffs toward Ocean Park. It was the first time anyone on the Island had seen sunshine in over a week.

Warm, golden rays broke through the slate-gray cloud cover as uniform-clad members of the honor guard struggled to hold their flags upright in the ferocious wind.

And then the parade stopped and the solemnity of the moment trumped the bone-chilling November weather.

“In this eleventh month and eleventh day, we take the time to remember,” said David Berube, an Oak Bluffs police officer and chaplain with the Massachusetts Air National Guard. Earlier this year he returned from serving four months in Dover, Del.

Gazing at the veterans standing in line in front of him, Mr. Berube continued: “This is not about us, it is about remembering all those who served before us. Every veteran has a story which is part of our nation’s greater narrative.” Mr. Berube’s speech was preceded by a gracious welcome from Peter Herrmann, a past commander of the Veterans of Foreign War Post 9261. As master of ceremonies, Mr. Herrmann had his work cut out for him, speaking loudly into a microphone that appeared as if it might take flight any minute in the wind. He praised the efforts of everyone who came out in the weather.

Haley Hewson, a junior at the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School, sang the national anthem. The scene was a sea of multi-colored uniforms: seasoned veterans who served in foreign wars, young Cub Scouts from Pack 90 and 93, Boy Scouts from Troop 90 and Girl Scouts from Troop 80779 stood at attention while Ms. Hewson sang. Hair, hats and coats flapped about, and a flag high atop a mast next to the Oak Bluffs police station snapped in the wind. Later in the ceremony Ms. Hewson she sang Amazing Grace, her intonation perfect.

For many Vineyard veterans, their friends and loved ones, the Veterans Day observance began on Wednesday afternoon outdoors in front of the Martha’s Vineyard Community Services complex, where a crowd gathered in a steady drizzle to dedicate a sculpture and honor Tom Bennett and his 40 years of service.

The gathering included past and present members who have worked with Community Services through the years, going back to when Mr. Bennett first began working for the social services organization.

“We are part of history in the making,” said Julia Burgess, Community Services executive director, at the dedication of a monument created by Vineyard Haven sculptor Barney Zeitz.

Angela Wheeler, director of development for Community Services, gave a brief history of the monument, which was sculpted as a memorial for Island Viet Nam veterans and once stood outside the Mansion House in Vineyard Haven. It was recently relocated to the Community Services complex. Ms. Wheeler praised Mr. Bennett’s years of service through the Island Counseling Center, which included among other things working with Vineyard veterans who had served in Viet Nam and in other foreign wars.

“I am truly honored and humbled by this tribute today,” said Mr. Bennett, who stood next to his wife, Carol, and other family members and friends.

“The memorial was made to be for everyone who embraces it, and it represents the healing spirit of all those affected by the trauma of war,” Mr. Bennett said.

And finally, Mr. Bennett made one last request for Veterans Day.

“I have a request to make of all of you; please find time in your day to thank a veteran for their service to our country,” he said.