Small Showing, Strong Support For Local Memorial Day Parade (PHOTOS & VIDEO)

By Corinne Rose


13 photos

May 27, 2013 Updated Dec 2, 2013 at 1:51 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind (www.incnow.tv) -- A small showing of people gave their support to our nation's military, past and present, by braving the cold and rain to watch the annual Memorial Day parade.

The smattering of veterans and civilians made the effort to attend the annual Allen County Council of Veterans' Memorial Day parade.

Marine Benjamin Kuntz was in Iraq for seven months and Afghanistan for eight, among the first Americans there who relieved the British forces. He says attending the parade is important, but can be overwhelming.

"It really brings back a lot of memories. It's really touching. I always go to the memorial service afterwards with my family. I've usually just came and stood and watched it. Now that I'm back home for good, I'm going to start riding in it. But it really makes me remember who we've lost and all my friends I was with," Kuntz says.

From another generation, another veteran says he comes here to pay his respects to the generation before him.

"I'm telling you what, when you turn around, we had 15 million people serve this country in World War II. And all of us are here because of their service. And when you think about all of the people that have served us. And that's really important because we have freedom in this country that no one else in this world has," says Army veteran Ed Leonard.

Despite the rain and the small turnout, there is a core group of people that comes every year. And it's important to the whole family.

"We're here just to instill in them that they need to come here and be thankful for our veterans, and to also say thank you to their grandpa. We have come every year since I was born, so we just have made it a family tradition to be here regardless of the weather, even though it's not been very warm today," Heather Brown says.

So another generation is now growing up to appreciate the tradition of thanking the men and women who gave their lives in service... more than 1.2 million of them since America was founded.

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