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St. Patrick’s Parade Grand Marshal: Dave Roberts

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Savannah, Georgia -

After the hour-long ballot casting process at Benedictine Military School today, Dave Roberts was elected this year's Grand Marshal of Savannah's St. Patrick's Day parade this year.

In just 21 days, the streets of Savannah will 'go green' for the biggest celebration in the city. This year marks the 190th anniversary of the parade, when Roberts will lead the way.

"It feels great! Feels great to be Irish!" Roberts says.

The Savannah born and raised man of Irish decent says he was surprised when the totaled tallies determined that 2014 would be his year as the Grand Marshal of the St. Patrick's Day parade.

"It's the greatest honor you can have, to be an Irishman and live in Savannah, Georgia," he says.

The parade committee veteran of 38 years was voted Grand Marshal, over one other candidate, behind the closed doors at Benedictine at noon on Sunday. Roberts graduated from Benedictine himself in 1978.

"It means so much to me that you can't, I can't express how much it means," he said of the election's results.

He says he has held every office on the committee, except Adjutant. He is the first of his family to be elected Grand Marshal.

Congratulatory hand shakes followed the vote, and led into the reception afterwards.

Last year's Grand Marshal, Jimmy Ray, says he already offered his advice to Roberts.

"I told him just smile, and shake hands, and give all the ladies a hug. It's a wonderful thing," Ray says.

Ray will pass the sash of honor to Roberts in a ceremony next Sunday at the Civic Center. Until then, he has one last week to wear the title proudly.

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Dave Roberts was elected this year's Grand Marshal of Savannah's St. Patrick's Day Parade. The honor went to him after elections were held at Benedictine at noon. It took a little more than an hour for the committee to decide on Roberts.  We will have more on Roberts' background on WSAV at 6 p.m.

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