The 2022 Old Timers Festival parade grand marshal will be Rick Autery. This year’s theme is “Serving Thru History” as the City aims to honor not only our military veterans, but also our local people who dedicate so much of their lives to the betterment of our community. This year the City is also honoring its own history as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of incorporation.
Autery is a Marine Corps veteran, serving from 1971 until 1975. Autery is married to his wife, Trish, and had a daughter, Kelly, and three sons, Jason, Rick Jr., and Ryan. In La Vergne, Autery served on the Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee, currently serves on the Senior Citizens Advisory Committee, and coaches youth softball.
After serving in the armed forces, Autery went on to attend Ohio State University and Draughon’s Junior College before attending Nashville State Tech University’s electrical maintenance program. He went on to have a 20-year career at Nissan in robotics and automated equipment maintenance and has since retired.
“I have always been passionate about volunteer work; there are so many people in need of help,” says Autery. “In 2004, my son, Ryan, was seriously wounded in Iraq and while spending a great deal of time with him and other amputees at Walter Reed Hospital, I saw a huge need for ways to help reintegrate these heroes back into the social world.”
Autery is a cofounder of the CMA Project for the Wounded (2006-2010), which, in addition to fundraising, reached out to community organizations for assistance in bringing wounded soldiers and their families to Nashville for the CMA festival to honor those veterans and their families.
In 2010, Autery was diagnosed with cancer and, thanks to successful surgery and chemotherapy, has been cancer-free for more than a decade.
He spent eight years with the Nashville chapter of the Red Cross Disaster Relief Team, and was part of a team who went to Montana to assist with wildfires in 2016. Autery has coached various sports teams in La Vergne since 1995, including baseball, softball, and football.
The annual La Vergne Old Timers Festival is scheduled for September 17, 2022. The parade will begin at 10 a.m. at La Vergne City Hall, 5093 Murfreesboro Road, and will end at Veterans Memorial Park, 115 Floyd Mayfield Drive. The festival will officially kick off at the park following the parade and continue until about 3:30 p.m. There will be live music, a kids zone, demonstrations, food trucks and vendors.