Hundreds of Hoosiers gather for Veterans Day tribute in downtown Indianapolis

Mayor Greg Ballard thanked veterans for service

INDIANAPOLIS -  

Hundreds of Hoosiers gathered in downtown Indianapolis on Saturday for a Veterans Day tribute and parade.

A display of more than 200 pairs of boots representing every fallen Indiana military man and woman since the war in Iraq began were part of the ceremony.

Autumn Letendre's husband died in Iraq in 2006. 

"I'm not just a widow; I'm a mother. Raising a child, you learn that it's not all about tears. You do have to teach them laughter and joy, and that his dad did not just die, he lived," Letendre said.

Keynote speaker and veteran Mayor Greg Ballard thanked Vietnam War veterans for making the soldier-to-citizen transition easier for this generation than it was for many of them.

Vietnam veteran Charles Hylton regularly volunteers his time to make sure younger veterans receive a warm welcome home.

"When all the veterans came back from Vietnam, we didn't get treated right. We were called baby killers and all that kind of thing," Hylton said.

National guard Capt. Scott Oden said takes pride in the annual tribute.

"I think it is phenomenal to see Indianapolis put on an event like this every single year. It makes me proud to put the uniform on every day," Oden said.

Veterans Day activities were scheduled to continue Sunday.

 

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