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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Roller skating Uncle Sam makes last appearance in Nashua’s Memorial Day parade

Nashua’s own Uncle Sam is hitting the road.

The costumed figure, known during the rest of the year as Dave Bourque, is making this the last year he roller skates in the annual Memorial Day parade. His regular paying gig, that of a custom interior house painter, is taking him south. ...

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Nashua’s own Uncle Sam is hitting the road.

The costumed figure, known during the rest of the year as Dave Bourque, is making this the last year he roller skates in the annual Memorial Day parade. His regular paying gig, that of a custom interior house painter, is taking him south.

“I started skating when I was 4 years old, got into freestyle dance, now I teach people how to dance on skates,” said Bourque outside Collins Brothers Chowder Co. on Temple Street where he was putting some time in Friday. “Then, I basically wanted to take my skating to another level,” he said. I decided to get involved with the parades.

“My sister’s a costume designer out in San Diego. She’s the one who made the outfit. People seem to have a real great time with it. The veterans appreciate me showing up. It’s my way of giving something a little back to Nashua.

“It was an idea that just came to me one day. I checked with my sister. I knew she had 1,500 costumes at her house. I wanted to do something patriotic. I wanted to do something for the veterans.”

He asked himself how he could put this all together and incorporate it with his skating experience.

Though not a veteran himself, Bourque said he “signed up for two different branches of the service and didn’t get accepted. … I’ve got to do something on the other side.”

He has also brought the spectacle to the Charleston, S.C., he said. Bourque said it’s his way of “paying it forward.”

“If they’ll have me down there, then Uncle Sam will keep right on rolling,” he said.

Don Himsel can be reached at 594-6590 or dhimsel@nashuatelegraph.com. Also, follow Himsel on Twitter (@Telegraph_DonH).