Legendary singer of Caribbean heritage, Harry Belafonte and Caribbean soca king, Machel Montano, were brought together by the organizers of the annual event to serve as Grand Marshals of the 45th annual parade.
Belafonte, 85, renown for his hit, “Day-O,’ commented: “I’m very excited to be here.” Soca star Montano seemed not only elated to be there but to be teamed with the legendary Belafonte.
Tens of thousands, many clad in colorful, sequined skimpy costumes and feathered head dresses danced their way down Eastern Parkway to the sounds of West Indian soca, zouk and reggae music. WIADCA, the organizers of the event, was led this year by a new President, Tom Bailey.
Meanwhile, two men were stabbed to death and two people were shot in separate incidents after the festivities officially ended. At the intersection of Eastern Parkway and Bedford Ave., a 27-year-old man was stabbed in the neck and died before he got to Kings County Hospital.
About 10 blocks away, another man was stabbed in the Sing Wah Kitchen, a Chinese restaurant where a drunk patron was picking fights with strangers, the owner said.