Pasadena PD wishes local veteran a happy birthday


For his birthday, John Forsyth, a war veteran and local Pasadena resident, took a seat on a camping chair in front of his building and got to experience something he never had before.

A drive-by birthday party.

Wearing a birthday hat and a face mask, the newly minted 87-year-old waved as a parade of police officers in cars and motorcycles drove by his home honking and blaring their sirens. Friends and fellow veterans followed suit waving signs and shouting out “happy birthday” to Forsyth as they drove by in their cars.

Such is life during COVID-19, where birthday parties are held at a distance, hugs have turned into elbow bumps and police officers help commemorate special days as the world shelters at home.

 “People can’t celebrate the way they used too so we get a lot of requests from residents to come out. But we can’t do all of them,” said  Sergeant Sam De Sylva from Pasadena PD.  “We filter through the requests, but his one was touching for us. He’s 87, a war vet and he’s home … he can’t be around people. We had to come celebrate with him.”

Forsyth, a World War II veteran, was touched by the gesture from his fellow vets, friends and the Pasadena Police Department.

“I’m just overwhelmed with emotion,” said Forsyth.”I can’t express how wonderful it is to have the Pasadena Police Department celebrate my birthday with me. It’s just marvelous, I can’t express with words.”

Check out the video here:

Birthday signs are held outside vehicles as friends drive by World War II veteran John Forsyth as they take part in celebrating his 87th birthday in front of his home in Pasadena on May 6, 2020. (photo by James Carbone)