HATTIESBURG, Miss.(WHLT) – On Friday, the City of Hattiesburg hosted their 35th Veteran’s Day Celebration.
The community came together and aligned Hardy Street to watch the veterans parade and ceremony.
During the first part of the celebration, local high school bands and JROTC students paraded throughout the street showing their appreciation to veterans from the Pine Belt.
Mayor Toby Barker and Congressman Steven Palazzo of the 4th District also joined the festivities.
“We owe our veterans Our past, current veterans, everything. Our freedoms our opportunity, our prosperity. So any opportunity we get to be able to come and celebrate their life of service, and also thank their families for what they do, because while they’re on the war front, someone has to take care of the home front,” said Congressman Steven Palazzo.
After the parade, the city held a ceremony that honored Patricia Thompson as “Veteran of the Year.” Patricia served in the Army for 24 years and she’s well-known for her outstanding service to her fellow veterans and the community.
She said, “It is amazing, and it’s still surreal to me. So I’m like pinching myself. I just want to thank everybody that voted for me, have confidence in my motivation to keep me going.”
The ceremony also praised past and present veterans who have served in every capacity of the military. Each branch of the military (Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard) had a flag presented at the ceremony in representation of the sacrifices each has made for the county.