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Thousands honor veterans at Albany parade

(SBG)

ALBANY, Ore. -- It was an exciting time in Albany where thousands of people paid their respects to those who once served in the military.

The 2017 Veterans Day Parade in Albany was also entertaining, featuring a robot, military Humvees and motorcycles, among other displays.

For people like nine-year-old Jesse Hartsell, the parade is a simple message to the men and women in uniform: “Thank you for serving and thank you for all your time you put out."

But for others, it’s more than a simple message, like one man with the stars and stripes across his t-shirt who waved a huge American flag, cheering and shaking hands with nearly every single person in the parade.

"I am so thankful for my freedom," spectator Johnny Garcia, "and I want these men and women to know how thankful I am for these freedoms."

Johnny Garcia also gave them something more than just a thank you - he gave them a yellow rose.

"These are for my brothers and sisters that are fighting still today, that can’t be here today," said Garcia, who’s not a vet himself, but has been going to the parade for nearly a decade. He said he doesn’t plan on stopping.

As the parade ended, he said he not only views those who served as veterans, but more like heroes.

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